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WEST BROM PREVIEW

4 April 2014

Canaries welcome the Baggies to Carrow Road

NORWICH CITY v WEST BROMWICH ALBION
Barclays Premier League
15.00 kick-off
Carrow Road
Saturday, April 5, 2014

THIS fixture last season produced one of the most memorable days in recent Norwich City history.

Heading into the match knowing that a win would secure another season of Premier League football, Chris Hughton’s men put on a superb display to win 4-0 thanks to strikes from Robert Snodgrass, Grant Holt and Jonny Howson, plus a Gareth McAuley own goal.

Almost a year on and the Canaries find themselves facing another crucial encounter with the Baggies, although this time around their opponents are heavily involved in the battle for survival too.

City’s home form in 2014 has been outstanding – no defeats and no goals conceded from open play in the top flight, with John Ruddy only being beaten by Jonathan Walters’ penalty in the 1-1 draw with Stoke City.

They can also call on recent performances against West Brom – a team against which they have lost only once in their last five meetings.

It’s the Birmingham club who lead the head-to-head record overall, though, with 23 victories compared to Norwich’s 19.

MOST RECENT COMPETITIVE MEETINGS…
West Bromwich Albion 0-2 NORWICH CITY 07/12/2013 – Premier League
NORWICH CITY 4-0 West Bromwich Albion 12/05/2013 – Premier League
West Bromwich Albion 2-1 NORWICH CITY 22/12/2012 – Premier League
West Bromwich Albion 1-2 NORWICH CITY 28/01/2012 – FA Cup Fourth Round
West Bromwich Albion 1-2 NORWICH CITY 14/01/2012 – Premier League



LAST TIME AROUND… West Bromwich Albion 0-2 Norwich City, December 7 2013 – Premier League…

The Canaries produced a thoroughly professional performance on the road to beat West Brom 2-0 at the Hawthorns in December.

Gary Hooper’s crisp finish put Chris Hughton’s team ahead in the first period, and some resolute defending was rewarded when Leroy Fer sealed the points minutes from the end.

John Ruddy was in fine form between the sticks, denying Stephane Sessegnon and Shane Long with superb point-blank saves.

It was Norwich’s second win on the road of the campaign and, according to Hughton, the perfect answer to the critics after his side’s heavy defeat against Liverpool three days earlier.

"It was the ideal response. We have done that a couple of times this season and it has to be down to the players as after a Wednesday game you don't have too much time to prepare,” he said.

"Most of it is video work and going through some set-plays but physically you do not have a lot of time to work on anything. So it has to be a response from the players and we got that.

"We put ourselves under a lot of pressure, particularly in that final half an hour, but it is a clean sheet."

CANARIES’ FORM…
L – 0-3 v Swansea City (A) 29/03/2014 – Premier League
W – 2-0 v Sunderland (H) 22/03/2014 – Premier League
L – 2-4 v Southampton (A) 15/03/2014 – Premier League
D – 1-1 v Stoke City (H) 08/03/2014 – Premier League
L – 1-4 v Aston Villa (A) 02/03/2014 – Premier League

BAGGIES’ FORM…
D – 3-3 v Cardiff City (H) 29/03/2014 – Premier League
L – 0-2 v Hull City (A) 22/03/2014 – Premier League
W – 2-1 v Swansea City (A) 15/03/2014 – Premier League
L – 0-3 v Manchester United (H) 08/03/2014 – Premier League
D – 1-1 v Fulham (H) 22/02/2014 – Premier League



LAST NORWICH CITY XI (4-4-2 v Swansea City)…

John Ruddy; Russell Martin, Ryan Bennett, Sebastien Bassong (c), Martin Olsson; Robert Snodgrass, Jonny Howson, Alexander Tettey, Wes Hoolahan; Johan Elmander, Ricky van Wolfswinkel.

LAST WEST BROMWICH ALBION XI (4-2-3-1 v Cardiff City)...
Ben Foster; Steven Reid, Craig Dawson, Gareth McAuley (c), Liam Ridgewell; James Morrison, Youssuf Mulumbu; Morgan Amalfitano, Graham Dorrans, Stephane Sessegnon; Matej Vydra.

REFEREE – Mark Clattenburg…
County Durham official Mark Clattenburg will arrive in Norfolk fresh from officiating in the Champions League midweek.

The experienced referee was in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu for Real Madrid’s first-leg quarter-final game with Borussia Dortmund.

Clattenburg was in the middle for the reverse fixture at the Hawthorns in December, while his only other Canaries match this season came in the 2-1 defeat to Cardiff City on February 1.

In his 35 games so far in 2013/14, he has given out 118 yellow cards but just two red cards – to West Ham United’s Kevin Nolan and Manchester United’s Nemanja Vidic.

BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES (all games at 15.00 on Saturday unless stated otherwise)…
Manchester City v Southampton (12.45)
Aston Villa v Fulham
Cardiff City v Crystal Palace
Hull City v Swansea City
Newcastle United v Manchester United
NORWICH CITY v WEST BROMWICH ALBION
Chelsea v Stoke City (17.30)
Everton v Arsenal (Sunday, 13.30)
West Ham United v Liverpool (Sunday, 16.00)
Tottenham Hotspur v Sunderland (Monday, 20.00)

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