REPORT | CARDIFF CITY 0-1 NORWICH CITY
City slipped to their first home league defeat of the year against Alex Neil’s play-off chasing Norwich City, with Cameron Jerome scoring the solitary strike of the game.
NORWICH NET THE OPENER
Following his superb goal on Tuesday, the in-form Kenneth Zohore created the first opportunity for the Bluebirds. The Dainsh striker got onto the end of Matt Connolly’s cross, only for his header to be kept out by John Ruddy. At the other end, the best chance of the half fell to ex-Bluebird Jerome, who saw his effort blocked by the onrushing Allan McGregor.
The deadlock was broken after forty minutes, with the Canaries taking the lead against the run of play. A foul outside the box allowed Wes Hoolahan to float in a dangerous free-kick. The Irish midfielder’s delivery was met by Jerome, who netted his ninth of the season to give the visitors the advantage. Just before the break, the striker forced another smart save from McGregor, with the City keeper getting down well to keep out a volleyed attempt.
PENALTY CLAIMS DISMISSED
Chasing an equaliser, Junior Hoilett provided a brilliant cross minutes after the interval, with Peter Whittingham inches away from nodding home. Whittingham was again involved on the hour mark, delivering a ferocious corner which was beaten away by Ruddy. At the other end, substitute Jacob Murphy’s cross was deflected awkwardly towards goal, though McGregor made sure he was not caught out, collecting the ball instinctively at the front post.
A key moment occurred fifteen minutes from time, with substitute Rhys Healey involved. He collected a loose ball inside the Norwich box and turned away from his marker, before being brought down. Ignoring the appeals from the City fans, the referee signalled for a free-kick to the visitors, showing Healey a yellow card for apparent simulation. Two minutes later, Kadeem Harris burst into the box, having skipped past two defenders, and also hit the deck after a late challenge. However, this time, the referee waved for play to continue.
CANARIES TAKE THE POINTS
City continued their late pressure, with a golden chance falling to Harris. An excellent run from Craig Noone ended with a low drive, which was blocked into Harris’ path. The winger unfortunately put his shot over the bar from close range, as five minutes of added time were announced.
Despite a number of late long-throws, only one provided a meaningful chance, which Sol Bamba aimed straight at Ruddy. The Canaries’ sturdy defending proved crucial, as the final whistle signalled a cruel defeat for the Bluebirds. Up next for City is a tough trip to Elland Road, followed by a home fixture against Rotherham United.
FULL TIME: CARDIFF CITY 0 – 1 NORWICH CITY
Cardiff City: McGregor, Richards, Bamba, Morrison, Connolly (John 86), Gunnarsson, Ralls, Whittingham (Healey 72), Hoilett (Noone 70), K. Harris, Zohore.
Subs not used: Murphy, John, Halford, M.Harris, Gounongbe.
Norwich City: Ruddy, Pinto, Martin, Klose, Dijks, Howson, Tettey, Ja. Murphy (Oliveira 80), Wildschut (Jo. Murphy 71), Hoolahan (Bennett 88), Jerome.
Subs not used: McGovern, Whittaker, Godfrey, Pritchard.