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Norwich City v Stoke City: 8th March 2014

Norwich City v Stoke City: 8th March 2014

Norwich city v Stoke city action

Jonathan Walters scored a penalty for the second week in succession, then sent off as Stoke fought back to draw against Norwich at Carrow Road.

Bradley Johnson headed in Robert Snodgrass’s free-kick to put the Canaries ahead in the second half.

Walters, who scored from the spot against Arsenal last weekend, converted another penalty after Sebastien Bassong’s clumsy foul on John Guidetti.

Walters was dismissed then for a high challenge on Alexander Tettey, but the hosts could not force a winning goal.

Consequently, Norwich will see the result as two points dropped. particularly as they led, and were playing against only 10 men for the last 12 minutes, against a resolute Stoke side.

Who’s afraid of the Wolf?

Ricky van Wolfswinkel is Norwich’s club record signing and cost £8.5m when he joined the Canaries from Sporting Lisbon last summer.

He scored on his debut against Everton, but has failed to find the net since, a run covering 20 games in all competitions.

He has now played a total of 1,159 minutes (19 hours, 19 minutes) since scoring for Norwich.

The draw also keeps the pressure on manager Chris Hughton, who last month was warned that the club’s league position needed to improve.

However, Norwich are now 15th in the Premier League and are only four points above the bottom three.

They face a critical spell in their season as their play fellow strugglers Sunderland, Swansea, West Brom and Fulham in four of their next five matches, before ending the season with games against Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal.

Stoke remain without an away league win since 31 August, but the point takes them up to 12th, two points ahead of Norwich.

The visitors had the better of a poor first half with Peter Crouch and Walters having shots saved by John Ruddy before Marko Arnautovic fired over.

But Mark Hughes’s side failed to build on a bright start as Norwich came back into the match, with Snodgrass having a powerful effort parried by Asmir Begovic.

Lone striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel lacked service – his best moment coming when he glanced a Snodgrass corner narrowly wide – but he has now not scored since the opening day of the season, a run of 20 games in all competitions.

Regardless, his side went ahead 10 minutes into the second half when Snodgrass’s delivery was met by Johnson, who scored his third of the campaign.

However a rash challenge in the penalty area by Norwich captain Bassong on substitute Guidetti gave Stoke a way back into the match. Walters took that chance, converting the spot kick.

The Republic of Ireland international’s day ended early, though, as he caught Tettey with a knee-high challenge and was shown a straight red card by Andre Marriner.

Guidetti, who had only been on the pitch for 17 minutes, was withdrawn as Stoke aimed to hang on for the draw.

Johnson missed a chance to score the winner for Norwich in injury time when he dragged a left-footed shot wide from outside the penalty area as Hughes’s side earned a hard-fought point.

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