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Match Reports

Stevenage 2-2 Norwich City

11 July 2017

Norwich City were held to a draw at Stevenage in their third pre-season friendly ahead of the 2017-18 campaign on Tuesday night.

A Nelson Oliveira penalty and deflected Alex Pritchard strike had given City a 2-0 lead, only for the hosts to pull one back before the interval through Alex Samuel ahead of converting a spot-kick of their own in the second half.

New recruit James Husband began the evening on the bench, with Head Coach Daniel Farke opting for a 3-4-3 formation.

A trio of Ben Godfrey, Christoph Zimmermann and Timm Klose were tasked with leading the Canaries' defensive responsibilites, with youngster Jamal Lewis pushed into a left-midfield role.

Lewis flanked the central duo of Harrison Reed and Mario Vrancic with Josh Murphy starting on the opposite wing, while Oliveira led the line with support from Wes Hoolahan and Pritchard.

Having won the penalty which led to City's opening goal against Lowestoft at the weekend, Lewis had a similar impact this time around when his driving run into the box was brought to an end illegally in the 7th minute.

Oliveira stepped up to take the resultant spot-kick, finding the corner to give the Canaries an early lead which they doubled midway through the half when Pritchard's low effort hitting a defender and going beyond goalkeeper Joe Fryer.

With the visitors playing at a high tempo and looking to play out of defence, they were creating numerous opportunities but were pegged back just after the half-hour mark when Samuel seized on an error to tap home.

City made four changes at the break, with Michael McGovern, Yanic Wildschut, James Maddison and Cameron Jerome taking the places of Paul Jones, Murphy, Hoolahan and Oliveira respectively.

Facing a completely changed Stevenage XI represented a stern test of the away side's energy-levels following a gruelling start to pre-season, but they began the second period on the front foot.

Jerome was denied well by Fryer having been sent through by Maddison, before the playmaker himself looped just over after meeting a smart pass from Wildschut.

They were pegged back with a quarter of the game remaining however, Godfrey harshly penalised for a handball in the box ahead of Dale Gorman firing home from the spot.

Wildschut saw a stinging drive kept out by substitute stopper Chris Day, with Husband given his first involvement in yellow 13 minutes from time in place of Reed who left the pitch in some discomfort after going down on halfway.

Farke's men ended the strongest, with a pair of long-range Vrancic attempts kept out as they were forced to settle for a stalemate ahead of Saturday's game at Cambridge United.


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