- Klopp relishing 'perfect' occasion
- Gill confident of keeping Rooney
- Blackburn appoint Bowyer as manager
- Europa winners to get Champions spot
- Assistant boss Phelan leaves Man Utd
- Stoke make contact with Hughes
- Lambert warns Benteke on transfer call
- Mazzarri named new Inter Milan coach
- No Whyte-Green link over Rangers
- Footballers cleared of sex assault
City Scrape Past Scunny And Into Round 3…
The Capital One Cup arrived at Carrow Road with the visit of Scunthorpe this evening, a competition that had so often proved to be City’s achilles heel. Today however happened to be different as City mustered up a 2-1 win.
As expected, Chris Hughton rung the changes for the visit of Scunthorpe United in the Capital One Cup. There were eleven changes to the side which saw Declan Rudd begin in goal. The back four saw Marc Tierney, Michael Turner and Ryan Bennett given the chance to banish their Fulham nightmares whilst they were joined by up and coming young’un George Francomb. The midfield welcomed back David Fox after injury, while seeing starts for Andrew Surman, Wes Hoolahan and Simon Lappin. The front two signalled first starts of the season for Steve Morison and Chris Martin, City’s late subs on Saturday.
It was a lively start to the game at a sparsely populated Carrow Road. With 2 minutes gone Scunthorpe ventured forwards via Barcham who saw his shot well parried by Declan Rudd. City responded through Wes Hoolahan whose neat volley was deflected wide for a corner for the Canaries. Norwich were working hard and enjoying early dominance, they came again with Francomb whipping in a cross, Martin rose with an overhead kick though couldn’t quite get it right and the ball whistled wide. City’s front two combined after a cracking pass from Michael Turner. Chris Martin chased it down, slipped it through to Morison who couldn’t quite latch onto it – though these were certainly encouraging signs! Just past the half hour mark, the few at Carrow Road were treated with a real collector’s item as Simon Lappin scored.
The Scottish Spaniard picked the ball up from range, let fly and crashed home a belter of a strike which, clipped the post, to give City the lead. It was his first goal for 5 seasons, it’d been some wait for Lappin to hit the net! Although, near immediately Scunny responded with a super strike of their own. Duffy sent an arching curler at goal from distance, despite being at full stretch there wasn’t a hope for Declan Rudd as the net bulged behind him – the scores were level. With half-time drawing in Norwich looked to reclaim their lead, forcing a corner. Surman’s ball in found Ryan Bennett who scrapped a header wide, it was half a chance for the centre-back. On the stroke of the interval City nearly retook the lead as Hoolahan and Scunny keeper, Slocombe took turns to see the ball bounce off them, though it was hacked off the line before rolling into the net.
After a promising start to the game things had fizzled out for large parts. It was lit up thanks to two super strikes though aside from that it had been quite the quiet affair thus far…
Hughton’s men came back out unchanged for the second period, looking to book their place in the 3rd round. City started well, building neatly before Lappin had another pop, his feisty effort was well blocked as it looked threatening for Slocombe. The Scotsman took a bit of a clattering in the process and sadly had to be withdrawn, being replaced by Anthony Pilkington. City came again with Hoolahan and Morison playing a one-two, before the Irishman was hauled down in the box. Hoolahan stepped up himself to take the penalty, smashing it emphatically into the top corner to send City 2-1 up. Their tails up, the Canaries came again with Surman sliding a ball across which drew Slocombe into a decent save. Norwich were now dominating possession, attacking through Chris Martin who smashed a ball across – it took a wicked deflection and went out for a corner.
Scunthorpe looked to mount a response and called Rudd into action, Grella was set through as a neat move came to its conclusion though Rudd made a solid diving stop. A minute later he was drawn into a save again as Barcham sent a shot through a crowd of bodies, but the young keeper held on well. They were having a decent spell as Josh Walker found space, although his ambitious effort didn’t hit the target and flew over. City forced a few crosses as they tried to kill things off with Pilkington the architect, though Canavan helped to scrap it clear. Francomb came reasonably close to his first goal for the club as time ran out for Scunny, sending a cross-shot whistling across goal as a fine piece of play reached a climax.
City attacked once more with Hoolahan finding Tierney, he whipped in a cross for Surman. The former Southampton midfielder got his head on it though lacked power, which allowed Slocombe to make the save. Scunthorpe were still a threat, putting together a fine string of passes before Prutton was teed up; smashing in a dipping volley which Rudd made a good save from, tipping over the crossbar. Steve Morison was withdrawn for the last 10 minutes with Hughton handing Simeon Jackson a run-out. After Chris Martin’s deflected shot flew wide, City had another corner as they searched for an elusive third.
They could have had another penalty late on as Martin took a tumble, though the referee was having none of it. With the clock ticking past 90, 5 minutes of added time were found from somewhere by the officials. Though a miscued Mirfin backpass gave Norwich a corner. Surman’s corner found Turner, he found Pilkington though Scunthorpe managed to scramble clear. With the seconds ticking away the Canaries were playing keep ball, making their frustrated opponents chase shadows. Norwich 2-1 Scunthorpe.
It wasn’t really the rip roaring goal fest some fans had hoped, but a win is a win and it’s a further platform for Hughton and his team to build on. It’s back to league matters on Saturday with the international break looming large, Norwich take on Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.
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