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REPORT: CAMBRIDGE 1-3 CITY

17 July 2015

Canaries come from behind to win

NORWICH City outlasted Cambridge United in their 120-minute friendly to win 3-1 at the Abbey Stadium.

The match was extended into four quarters to allow both teams to give their players more game time as preparations intensify for the 2015-16 season.

Cambridge went ahead just after the half hour mark when Barry Corr found the corner from Jordan Slew's pass.

Gary Hooper's penalty levelled proceedings on prior to break, and two minutes into the second 60-minute half Ricky van Wolfswinkel marked his first apperance of pre-season with a goal.

With the unique format of the contest, Alex Neil once again chose two elevens, each playing an hour against the League Two side.

Cameron Jerome, scorer of four goals in City's opening two warm-up matches, was partnered in attack by Hooper for the first two quarters, with Vadis Odjidja Ofoe returning to the fold after his Hitchin absence.

John Ruddy also started against the club where he began his career, and the Canaries' number one was given a warm reception by the home crowd before kick-off.

He watched a Robbie Simpson shot sail over his bar in the third minute, but it was the visitors who had the first effort on target as Matt Duke kept out Jerome's header after Steven Whittaker had crossed from the right.


Whittaker himself fired wide left-footed from outside the box soon after, but after counter-attacking City, Cambridge forced Ruddy into an excellent save on 13 minutes.

It was Harrison Dunk with the powerful drive off his left flank, and the Norwich goalkeeper had to fingertip the ball over his bar to safety.

City broke through Odjidja on 17 minutes but the ball was whipped off Bradley Johnson's toes - they were holding possession well but the hosts looked dangerous using the height of new striker Corr.

Hooper hit a snapshot over the corner of post and bar after stubborn persistance from Youssouf Mulumbu in the box, and that proved the final opportunity of the opening 30 minutes.

After a short break and a change of ends, Cambridge took the lead on 33 minutes through Corr.

Jordan Slew broke down the left flank and his low cross was met by the ex-Southend frontman, who slid the ball into the far corner beyond Ruddy.

The pair combined again two minutes later; it was Corr who played in Slew this time, but he got under his shot and it rose above the frame of the goal.

Cambridge's direct tactics were effective in causing City problems, although Louis Thompson should have done better when presented with an opportunity inside the box on 40 minutes.


Neil will have been concerned to see Jerome limp off soon after - the striker had appeared to pick up a knock earlier on in the game. Josh Murphy came off the bench as his replacement.

Norwich weren't playing with the same control as the opening half an hour, and Luke Berry went close to adding another for Cambridge, flashing a shot wide from the edge of the area.

Hooper fired well over from Josh Murphy's reverse ball, and Johnson's effort was closer as City responded, forcing Sam Beasant into a save low down to his right.

Just a minute before half-time was due, they were then given the opportunity to level from the penalty spot after Thompson was felled in the area.

Hooper was the man who stood up to the task, sending Beasant the wrong way to bring the game all square for the break.

HALF-TIME: Cambridge United 1-1 Norwich City

Alex Tettey and Lewis Grabban were among the starters who joined van Wolfswinkel in the second eleven, and the Dutch international was quick to make an impact.

Jacob Murphy sprinted onto Harry Toffolo's long ball down the left, and van Wolfswinkel was waiting at the far post to tap in from close-range.

Elliott Bennett, playing at right-back, was denied a penalty moments later close to the byline as Neil's rejigged team made an encouraging start to the third quarter.

O'Neil kept Beasant on his toes with a well-struck low shot, and the Us stopper did well to react to Jacob Murphy's cross-come-shot in the 80th minute.


The pace of the game in the second half was slower but it was still City who looked like they would be the team to add the game's fourth goal, with O'Neil turning Grabban's flick-on just wide.

Three minutes into the final quarter of the match, Grabban himself spurned a great opportunity when he met Elliott Bennett's cross at the near-post, his header drifting beyond the far post.

City got their third of the night moments later, however, and it was Toffolo who bagged it, converting van Wolfswinkel's cross at the back-post, opening up a two-goal cushion to Richard Money's side.


The lively Jacob Murphy had a long-range effort blocked, but Cambridge went close to pulling one back on 108 when Declan Rudd had to stand firm at his near-post to keep out Danny Carr's strike.

City quickly threatened to add a fourth through O'Neil, who tested Beasant with a curling save, with the home 'keeper called into action soon after as he denied Grabban.

Conor McGrandles replaced van Wolfswinkel with two minutes left on the clock, and Neil's troops saw out of the remainder of the tie to make it three wins out of three so far.

FULL-TIME: Cambridge United 1-3 Norwich City

GOALS: Us: Barry Corr (33) - Canaries: Gary Hooper (pen 59), Ricky van Wolfswinkel (62), Harry Toffolo (95)

NORWICH CITY FIRST 60 XI: Ruddy; Whittaker, R Bennett, Turner, Thompson; Mulumbu; Odjidja Ofoe, Dorrans, Johnson; Hooper, Jerome (Josh Murphy 40).

NORWICH CITY SECOND 60 XI: Rudd; E Bennett, Martin, Miquel, Toffolo; Tettey; O'Neil, Hoolahan, Jacob Murphy (Josh Murphy 109); van Wolfswinkel (McGrandles 118), Grabban.

SUBS NOT USED: Hall-Johnson.

ATTENDANCE: 3,890

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