Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Match Reports

Preston North End v Norwich City

17 April 2017


NORWICH City lifted themselves back above Preston North End by beating the Lilywhites 3-1 at Deepdale.

There was little to separate the two sides early on but City started to make an imprint on the game and got the opening goal on 28 minutes.

After probing on the edge of Preston's box, Steven Naismith teed up the returning Graham Dorrans who lashed a shot home via a deflection.

The home crowd were growing exacerbated with their team and City compounded their frustration by grabbing their second four minutes before half-time, Josh Murphy finishing well after a move involving Mitchell Dijks and Cameron Jerome.

Pritchard should have added a third in the seconds before the half-time whistle but the Canaries had to be content with half-time lead of two.

Both sides had opportunities in the early stages of the second half but as Preston slowly began to take control, they pulled one back through substitute Tommy Spurr.

The defender leapt to meet Paul Gallagher's free-kick, guiding a glancing header beyond John Ruddy and giving the home crowd something to get behind.

City withstood some further Lilywhites pressure and introduced Nelson Oliveira and James Maddison to change the flow of the game, the latter making his league bow for the Club.

It was to become a first Sky Bet Championship appearance to remember for Maddison too as he wrapped up the points in stoppage time by coolly finishing off a counter-attack for his first goal in yellow and green.

City made five changes from the 3-1 home defeat to Fulham on Good Friday.

Timm Klose missed out through injury so Ryan Bennett returned to central defence in his place, while Dorrans came in for Alex Tettey.

In the attacking third, Alan Irvine opted for Steven Naismith on the right and Murphy on the left, with Jacob Murphy on the bench and Wes Hoolahan absent from the matchday squad.

Jerome replaced Oliveira having scored off the bench in his last two matches, while youngsters Maddison and Ben Godfrey were included among the substitutes.

A one-goal advantage is always fragile, especially away from home, and Murphy's strike late in the first half proved a crucial goal for City.

The move leading up to it was a good one as Dijks spotted Jerome with his back to goal in the box and picked him out with a precise pass.

After City's top scorer was crowded out, the ball fell kindly to the unmarked Murphy and the winger showed composure to pick his spot beyond Chris Maxwell.

At the end of the Bank Holiday action in the Championship, City had moved back above their hosts and Derby County into eighth place.

It was also a morale-boosting fifth win on the road in the division, giving the 500-strong travelling Yellow Army something to celebrate at the final whistle in Lancashire.

GOALS: Lilywhites: Tommy Spurr (67) - Canaries: Graham Dorrans (28), Josh Murphy (41), James Maddison (90)

: Maxwell, Vermijl (Horgan 62), Huntington, Boyle, Cunningham (Spurr 10), Barkhuizen, Gallagher (c), Browne, McGeady, Robinson (Johnson 82), Hugill. Subs not used: Hudson (GK), Makienok, Beckford, May.

: Ruddy; Pinto, Martin (c), Bennett, Dijks; Dorrans, Howson; Naismith, Pritchard (Maddison 79), Jo. Murphy; Jerome (Oliveira 79). Subs not used: McGovern (GK), Whittaker, Wildschut, Ja. Murphy, Godfrey.

REFEREE: James Adcock


City host Brighton and Hove Albion in the Sky Bet Championship on Friday night, with tickets on general sale HERE.

To view the Canaries' upcoming fixtures in full, click HERE.

Advertisement block