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Match Reports

Huddersfield Town v Norwich City

17 March 2015


JAMAR Loza scored a last-gasp equaliser for Norwich City in a thrilling finale to earn his team a 2-2 draw with Huddersfield Town.

The Academy product converted from close-range in the sixth minute of stoppage time just moments after James Vaughan's late-strike had looked to have won it for the hosts.

It was the 20-year-old's first senior goal for the Canaries and came in extraordinary circumstances at the John Smith's Stadium.

Wes Hoolahan had earlier levelled for Alex Neil's men follow Ishmael Miller's opener ten minutes into the second half, but no-one could have foreseen a mesmerising final few minutes.

In the bigger picture, with the conclusion of the other Sky Bet Championship matches, City finished five points off the top two in the table and face Nottingham Forest at Carrow Road on Saturday.

Neil made two tactical changes before kick-off, with Nathan Redmond returning to the team in Alex Tettey's place, while Gary Hooper replaced Hoolahan.

Huddersfield named two former Canaries in their starting eleven in the shape of Jacob Butterfield and James Vaughan as they chased their first league win in five.

Despite the first half yielding no goals, the contest was an open one, with the main incident occurring after just seven minutes.

City thought they had taken the lead when Johnson bundled in Cameron Jerome's header, but after a conversation between referee Nigel Miller and his assistant Lisa Rashid, it was chalked off.

Handball was the reason, even though the Canaries players had made their way back to the centre circle before play was eventually brought back.

Sebastien Bassong lifted a difficult chance over the bar soon after, but Huddersfield went close when Joel Lynch saw a strong header turned over the bar by John Ruddy.

The hosts were pressing high, with front pair Miller and Vaughan proving a handful and Ruddy had to be quick off his line to prevent the former after Conor Coady's long pass.

Vaughan spurned a decent opportunity from Coady's reverse pass before the same man saw Ruddy is his way when he linked up with Miller on 36 minutes.

Russell Martin scrambled back to deny Vaughan another shot, but the clearest chance of the half was to fall to Hooper a minute before the whistle.

Jonny Howson was allowed the time to break into the box, but rather than shoot himself he squared to the front man - unfortunately, he couldn't make a connection with the goal gaping.

HALF-TIME: Huddersfield Town 0-0 Norwich City

City were quickly out of the blocks in the second half and Johnson will have been disappointed to blast his shot wide when teed up by Redmond on 49 minutes.

Six minutes later, however, they found themselves behind when handful Miller found the net.

The towering striker spun Bassong in the box and kept his composure to round Ruddy before firing home left-footed.

On the hour mark, Johnson looked for Hooper's run in the box and the forward appeared to be tugged back by Lynch, but nothing was awarded by referee Miller.

Neil introduced Hoolahan and the in-form midfielder made the difference just five minutes after coming on.

After good play by Redmond, Hoolahan played a deft one-two with Howson before calmly slotting the ball beyond Smithies and in.

City had the bit between their teeth but Huddersfield defended set-pieces strongly, and Neil decided to bring on Tony Andreu for Hooper.

They were looking for that opening in the final ten minutes, and even threw on young forward Loza to join Jerome in attack.

In the final minute of added time, however, the Terriers looked to have stolen the three points as Vaughan pounced in the box after the Canaries had switched off from a throw-in.

But the drama wasn't over, and after Vaughan was dismissed for a second yellow card for removing his shirt in celebration, Loza popped up at the backpost in City's last desperate attack to secure what could be a valuable point in front of the travelling supporters.

FULL-TIME: Huddersfield Town 2-2 Norwich City

GOALS: Terriers: Ishmael Miller (55), James Vaughan (90) - Canaries: Wes Hoolahan (67), Jamar Loza (90)

HUDDERSFIELD TOWN: Smithies, Hudson (c), Hogg, Scannell, Butterfield, Vaughan, Coady, Miller (Gobern 78), Carroll (Edgar 70), Smith, Lynch. Subs not used: Murphy (GK), Wallace, Holmes, Charles, Majewski.

NORWICH CITY: Ruddy; Whittaker, Martin (c), Bassong, Olsson; Redmond, Howson (Loza 86), Dorrans, Johnson (Hoolahan 62); Hooper (Andreu 78), Jerome. Subs not used: Rudd (GK), Cuellar, Tettey, Odjidja-Ofoe.

REFEREE: Nigel Miller

Nottingham Forest - March 21, 3pm

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