sports

Wasteful leaders Norwich pegged back by QPR


Teemu Pukki scores a penalty for Norwich City
Teemu Pukki has now scored 11 goals in 20 Championship appearances for Norwich City

Wasteful Norwich City threw away the chance to go seven points clear at the top of the Championship as they drew with Queens Park Rangers.

After an entertaining but goalless first half, Todd Cantwell had a goal ruled out for offside as the Canaries spurned chance after chance during a dominant second period.

Norwich finally found the net with their 20th attempt, as Teemu Pukki converted a penalty after Cantwell went down under a challenge by Dominic Ball.

But Rangers salvaged a point they did not deserve when Bright Osayi-Samuel scored a penalty of his own following Christoph Zimmermann’s challenge on him.

The visitors could even have won it in stoppage time when Osayi-Samuel managed to miss an open goal from two yards out.

The Canaries are five points clear of second-placed Bournemouth, who have a game in hand, while Rangers remain in 19th place.

Kenny McLean, Emiliano Buendia and Mario Vrancic had decent first-half efforts for Norwich, although the best chance of the period came when Elias Chair broke clear for Rangers, but he was forced wide by a combination of Zimmermann and goalkeeper Michael McGovern and the opportunity went begging.

Norwich were dealt a blow at the end of the half when McGovern suffered an injury – the Northern Irish goalkeeper had been standing in for first-choice Tim Krul and had to be replaced by 19-year-old English Football League debutant Daniel Barden.

Barden was a spectator for much of the second period as Seny Dieng did well to save from Buendia and Pukki, while Rob Dickie cleared Jacob Sorensen’s shot off the line as Norwich constantly looked dangerous.

Pukki’s penalty was deserved, but it spurred Rangers into action as Barden palmed over a header from a corner before the visitors levelled.

And Rangers should have returned to west London with all three points as Albert Adomah broke down the right and put a perfect low pass across the face of the Norwich goal which picked out Osayi-Samuel at the far post, but the attacker somehow managed to put it over the bar when it was easier to score.

Norwich City head coach Daniel Farke told BBC Radio Norfolk:

“We deserved to win this game. It was a difficult game against a brave side who dominate possession quite often, even in games against the top teams.

“We knew that we had to be fully switched on today, I think we played a more than solid first half, high intensity game, we controlled everything.

“We scored a brilliant team goal, a great pass from Teemu and a great goal from Todd, but it was disallowed, I’ve watched it back and I think it’s clear.”

QPR manager Mark Warburton told BBC Radio London:

“Every point’s really important. It’s a tough place to come, you have to withstand some pressure, you have to be resolute, you have to defend in shape, get first contact and then you have to be dangerous, you have to pose a threat. We did that.

“It was a very poor decision for the penalty, a shocking decision, which we’ve had too many of this season. But they responded very well, showed real character, real quality, real desire, got the equaliser and in truth could have nicked it right at the death there with a huge chance.

“The players deserve a lot of credit, they stuck to the game plan and they worked tirelessly throughout 90 minutes.”

Line-ups

Norwich

  • 33McGovernSubstituted forBardenat 45′minutes
  • 2Aarons
  • 6ZimmermannBooked at 84mins
  • 5Hanley
  • 19Lungi SørensenSubstituted forHugillat 89′minutes
  • 20SkippBooked at 90mins
  • 23McLeanBooked at 87mins
  • 17Buendía
  • 8Vrancic
  • 14CantwellSubstituted forDowellat 89′minutes
  • 22Pukki

Substitutes

  • 9Hugill
  • 10Dowell
  • 16Quintillá
  • 24Martin
  • 27Tettey
  • 34Gibson
  • 44Omobamidele
  • 50Barden
  • 53Omotoye

QPR

  • 13Dieng
  • 2KaneBooked at 22mins
  • 4DickieBooked at 75mins
  • 20Cameron
  • 6Barbet
  • 25Hämäläinen
  • 10ChairSubstituted forAdomahat 71′minutes
  • 12BallBooked at 73mins
  • 22CarrollBooked at 88mins
  • 9DykesSubstituted forBonneat 71′minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 11Osayi-SamuelBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 7Bonne
  • 19Thomas
  • 21Willock
  • 23Masterson
  • 26Bettache
  • 29Kelman
  • 32Kelly
  • 37Adomah
  • 41Duke-McKenna

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