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    Norwich City 0-1 West Bromwich Albion


    West Bromwich Albion visited Carrow Road on Saturday afternoon with the hosts scoring and conceding goals galore, whilst the visitors had one of the strongest defences in the league but were struggling to consistently find the back of the net.

    Wes Hoolahan and Matt Jarvis came back into the starting line-up for Norwich as Alex Neil's men went searching for their first win in six weeks. Ryan Bennett was also selected to try and strengthen the back four. Tony Pulis kept faith with Salomon Rondon who had been finding it difficult to settle in Birmingham, particularly with having to travel backwards and forwards to play for Venezuela.



    Norwich dominated possession in the opening period of the game but it was Chris Brunt who created the first opportunity of the match. The left winger hit a crunching drive with his cultured left foot that was clawed away by John Ruddy on his birthday. The hosts continued to press forward and Nathan Redmond hit an angled drive at Boaz Myhill as Norwich sought a breakthrough. The Baggies were certainly on the back foot but the Canaries struggled to create many opportunities and it was the visitors who went close on the half hour mark. A creative free-kick routine caught Norwich napping and Craig Dawson's driven cross was inches away from finding Salomon Rondon. Matt Jarvis was proving to be a common outlet for Norwich and the left winger found Nathan Redmond with a whipped cross but the home side's top goalscorer headed the ball just over.

    As the first half began to draw to a close, the game started to resemble that of a basketball match with both teams taking turns to attack. Chris Brunt had another long range effort saved by John Ruddy, before Craig Dawson headed a corner into the ground and over from six yards when he should have put the away side into the lead. Norwich came back with Jonny Howson's deflected effort bouncing into Dieumerci Mbokani's path only to be smothered by Boaz Myhill. The visitors had another opportunity to grab a lead just before the half time whistle when Salomon Rondon headed over an excellent chance from Chris Brunt's cross.



    Two excellent headed opportunities just before the break should have been a warning to Norwich but they did not heed it at the beginning of the second half. This time it was James McClean who whipped in an excellent cross for Salomon Rondon to head West Brom into the lead just one minute after the break. The visitors had kept five clean sheets in their last eight games and were becoming masters of 1-0 victories so a Norwich comeback was going to be difficult. West Brom continued to show their defensive credentials and started to kill the game off as Norwich seemed to lack any ideas or creativity. Chris Brunt forced a third save from John Ruddy midway through the half and the only Norwich shot in their attempted comeback came from Sebastian Bassong who headed over a corner with ten minutes to go. 

    The visitors held out for a third 1-0 victory of the season that moved them into the top half of the table. Norwich's poor form continued as they slid into 16th place, just three points above the relegation zone. Life won't get much easier for the Canaries, who are due to play Manchester City, Swansea, Chelsea and Arsenal in their next four games. West Brom face Leicester on Saturday in their next Premier League fixture. 

    Man of the Match: Chris Brunt
    The West Brom winger caused Norwich problems all afternoon, with dangerous crosses and three shots that forced saves from John Ruddy.

    Article by Chris Lincoln





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    Item Reviewed: Norwich City 0-1 West Bromwich Albion Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Chris Lincoln
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