REPORT: CITY 1-1 STOKENORWICH City were held to a 1-1 draw by ten-man Stoke City at Carrow Road as Jonathan Walters equalised with a penalty and then got sent-off.
The former Ipswich striker dispatched from the spot with 18 minutes left after Sebastien Bassong had fouled John Guidetti, but his high tackle on Alex Tettey was punished with dismissal just minutes later.
Bradley Johnson had earlier headed the Canaries into the lead from Robert Snodgrass’ free-kick, but even though almost every City player was committed to attack in the last part of the match, they couldn’t find the crucial goal that would have turned one point into three.
The result meant the Canaries stayed in 15th place in the Premier League table, four points clear of the relegation places.
Hughton made one change from the side that lost 4-1 to Aston Villa, with Ricky van Wolfswinkel fit again and selected ahead of Gary Hooper, who had to be content with a place on the bench.
Stoke also made just one alteration, introducing Peter Odemwingie to their line-up in place of the suspended Charlie Adam – former Canary loanee Peter Crouch started in attack.
On the day dedicated to raising awareness and funds for former Club captain Duncan Forbes, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, his wife Janette addressed the home crowd ten minutes before kick-off in emotional scenes.
City got a couple of set-pieces in dangerous positions in the early stages of the game but it was Stoke who threatened first on eight minutes as Crouch burst onto a loose ball, but his shot was weak and John Ruddy saved comfortably.
Erik Pieters then played in Marko Arnautovic for the Potters, but the Austrian’s shot flew wildly over the bar before Jon Walters’ tame effort was a comfortable collection for Ruddy.
Norwich’s passing was going astray more often they’d have liked and it was from range when they had their first shot – Martin Olsson’s half-volley being a comfortable leave for Asmir Begovic.
Some excellent play by Wes Hoolahan on 28 minutes saw him slide an acute through ball to Robert Snodgrass, who was denied by the right-hand of Begovic – City’s best opportunity up to that point.
Van Wolfswinkel then flicked a header across goal from Snodgrass’ corner as City improved, but Stoke were offered a free-kick only a yard outside the box five minutes before the break after Sebastien Bassong tripped Odemwingie.
City’s supporters will have been relieved to see Arnautovic’s shot whistle wide, and that proved the final action of the opening period.
HALF-TIME: Norwich City 0-0 Stoke City
Eight minutes into the second period, Hoolahan’s hopeful effort from distance looked a comfortable save for Begovic, but the Bosnian spilled the initial shot and had to claw the ball away from going over the line.
He could nothing about the Canaries’ opening goal on 56 minutes however.
Pieters’ foul on Snodgrass on the right allowed the Scotland international winger the chance to whip in a free-kick, and Johnson – as he did in this fixture last season – rose to meet the cross, powering his header into the corner.
Nathan Redmond’s stinging shot came next as City built momentum, and Jonny Howson continued his comeback from injury by replacing Hoolahan.
However, Stoke were given a golden chance to get back into the game when Guidetti fell in the box under the challenge of Bassong.
Andre Marriner pointed to the spot, and Walters’ penalty was confidently dispatched into the right corner.
The former Ipswich man went from hero to villain only minutes later, however, as a late tackle Tettey led to Marriner issuing the red card straight away.
With the man advantage but the scores all square, Hughton introduced Johan Elmander and Gary Hooper to try and force a winner.
Stoke were getting deeper and deeper as the Canaries pressed but Johnson’s scuffed in effort in stoppage time was the closest they came as the match finished all square.
FULL-TIME: Norwich City 1-1 Stoke City
GOALS: Canaries: Bradley Johnson (56) - Potters: Jon Walters (pen 73)
NORWICH CITY: Ruddy; Martin, Yobo, Bassong (c), Olsson; Snodgrass, Tettey (Elmander 80), Johnson, Redmond; Hoolahan (Howson 67); van Wolfswinkel (Hooper 80). Subs not used: Bunn (GK), Whittaker, Pilkington, Becchio.
STOKE CITY: Begovic; Cameron, Shawcross (c), Wilson, Pieters; Odemwingie (Guidetti 63 (Ireland 80)), Whelan, Nzonzi, Arnautovic (Etherington 74); Walters, Crouch. Subs not used: Sorensen, Muniesa, Palacios, Wilkinson.
REFEREE: Andre Marriner