REPORT: CITY 6-3 BURYNORWICH City progressed through to the Third Round of the Capital One Cup in thrilling fashion after beating Bury 6-3 at Carrow Road on Tuesday night.
Johan Elmander and Leroy Fer both netted on their home debut for the Canaries, with the Swedish striker scoring twice, with City's other goals coming from Martin Olsson, Anthony Pilkington and Steven Whittaker.
Bury showed remarkable resilience, however, and made a contest of it in the second half thanks to strikes from Anton Forrester, William Edjenguele and a screamer from Jessy Reindorf.
Seven of the nine goals came in a remarkable second period on a night where the crowd of 16,110, including a vocal section of travelling support, were certainly entertained.
Team Captain Sebastien Bassong returned to City’s starting line-up for the first time this season, as did Pilkington while Robert Snodgrass started his first game.
Elmander and Fer were handed home debuts by Chris Hughton, while Mark Bunn deputised for John Ruddy and Russell Martin made his 150th appearance for the Club in a strong starting eleven.
As to be expected, Bury played at a high tempo in the opening quarter hour and City were restricted to just a hopeful effort from Martin that flew comfortably over Rob Lainton’s bar.
They took the lead on 23 minutes with their first potent attack of the game, however – Elmander held possession well before sliding a clever reverse ball to Olsson, who swivelled and powered home from 20 yards, leaving Lainton no chance and the home support delighted.
It was the perfect way for summer signing Olsson to get the home supporters singing his name, and they had even more to shout about eight minutes later when City doubled their lead.
Wes Hoolahan found Pilkington in the box and the left, and the returning City winger’s finish was sublime as it beat Lainton into the far corner.
Bassong and then Snodgrass went close in the immediate aftermath as City looked rampant, but Craig Jones forced a good low stop from Mark Bunn up the other on 37 minutes.
There was a moment of concern at the end of the first half when Bassong needed some treatment after a collision, but the centre-half continued albeit gingerly.
HALF-TIME: Norwich City 2-0 Bury
The tricky Jones forced a superb save from Bunn immediately after the break, with City’s goalkeeper reacting quickly to tip over his deflected shot.
Snodgrass then drilled a shot across goal in a lively few minutes after good interplay with Wes Hoolahan, and the Scot was on hand to assist for City’s third goal on 52 minutes.
Debutant Elmander took control of the winger’s pass, skipped inside the defender and wrong-footed Lainton to open his Canaries account in impressive fashion.
Snodgrass fed Pilkington on the left moments later, with the latter’s shot cannoning off the angle of post and bar as City responded to the fervour in the crowd with attack after attack.
Ryan Bennett received treatment after a collision with team-mate Martin after they tried to close down Anton Forrester, who blazed over the bar in one of Bury’s best opportunities.
Forrester then took advantage of some sloppy Norwich defending to pull a goal back on 71 minutes – there was a scramble in the area after a Marlon Jackson header and he was quickest to the ball, stabbing home off the underside of the crossbar.
City looked to have quashed any hopes of a comeback only four minutes later, though – Snodgrass turned provider once more, racing down the right and squaring to Elmander, who couldn’t miss from the inside box and netted his second of the night.
However, there was another twist in the tale moments later when Tommy Miller’s free-kick deflected off the wall and perfectly onto Edjenguele’s head, who nodded past Bunn and gave the Shakers something to cling onto for the last ten minutes.
Fer then put the tie to bed, though, on 83 minutes – Snodgrass’ corner was partially cleared and the Dutch international picked the ball up at the far post and fired it into the roof of the net, before substitute Whittaker put the icing on the cake with a fine shot into the far corner in the final moments.
There was still time for Bury to get the goal of the game in stoppage time though - Reindorf picked the ball up 35 yards and didn't look a danger, but he rocketed a superb goal into the corner that even had the Norwich fans on their feet in applause.
FULL-TIME: Norwich City 6-3 Bury
GOALS: Norwich City: Martin Olsson (23), Anthony Pilkington (31), Johan Elmander (52, 75), Leroy Fer (83), Steven Whittaker (87) – Bury: Anton Forrester (71), William Edjenguele (78), Jessy Reindorf (90).
NORWICH CITY: Bunn; Martin, Bassong (c), R Bennett (Whittaker 73), Olsson; Snodgrass, Fer (Redmond 84), Johnson, Pilkington (Becchio 76); Hoolahan; Elmander. Subs not used: Nash (GK), Turner, Howson, van Wolfswinkel.
BURY: Lainton; Beeley, Roberts (c), Cameron, Proctor, Jones, Miller, Forrester (Grimes 84), Mayor (Sedgwick 84), Jackson (Reindorf 76), Edjenguele. Subs not used: Carson (GK), Hinds, Holden, Harrad.