Souleymane Doukara strike secures 1-1 draw at Norwich...
NORWICH 1 (Martin 59), UNITED 1 (Doukara 63).
Norwich: Ruddy, Whittaker, Martin, Turner, Olsson, Redmond, Tettey, Howson, Murphy (Hooper 60), Lafferty (Odjidja-Ofoe 79), Jerome (Grabban 87). Subs. Rudd, Johnson, Miquel, O'Neil.
United: Silvestri, Byram, Bellusci, Pearce, Berardi, Austin, Bianchi, Mowatt (Cook 62), Adryan, Antenucci, Doukara (Sloth 90+1). Subs. S Taylor, Cooper, Warnock, Sharp, Morison.
Referee: M Clattenberg
Booked: Jerome, Lafferty (Norwich), Austin, Doukara (United)
The midweek trip to Norwich saw head coach Darko Milanic make two changes from the defeat at Rotherham as Sam Byram returned for Stephen Warnock with Gaetano Berardi switching to the left, while Adryan made his first start for the club in place of Lewis Cook.
It was the hosts who were the first to threaten as captain Russell Martin headed an early corner over before Alex Tettey dragged wide from range, while Mirco Antenucci and Souleymane Doukara caused problems at the other end.
Marco Silvestri was called upon for the first time after nine minutes, holding onto Jonny Howson’s low strike from inside the area after the former United man had worked an opening.
Silvestri’s opposite number, John Ruddy, then got down well to his right after Steven Whittaker almost put Alex Mowatt’s corner through his own net in a lively start to the game.
Cameron Jerome was unable to convert Josh Murphy’s cross from the left before Silvestri clutched onto another Tettey effort from distance as Norwich started to see more of the possession without truly testing the United backline.
But a flurry of chances soon came the hosts’ way. Jerome lashed a strike over the bar following a quick break and Martin skied his half-volley after a corner had fallen into his path before Kyle Lafferty fired wide on the turn inside the area.
Silvestri was in inspired form, first pushing away Nathan Redmond’s goal-bound effort before denying Lafferty with a stunning point-blank to deny Lafferty from inside the six-yard box as the United defence came under increased pressure.
Milanic altered the formation slightly as Adryan and Doukara began to occupy the wide positions and his side looked to make a more positive start to the second half, but Norwich soon picked up where they left off.
The United defence had managed to resist waves of pressure but the breakthrough eventually came on 59 minutes as Martin rose inside the area to head Redmond’s corner beyond Silvestri.
But their lead proved to be short-lived as United broke up-field just four minutes later and Doukara sent the travelling fans into raptures, calmly slotting into Ruddy’s bottom left corner after being played through by the outside of Adryan's boot.
Jerome lashed a strike across the face of Silvestri’s goal and Michael Turner headed a corner wide before Redmond curled an effort straight into the United goalkeeper’s arms as Norwich issued a reminder of their attacking threat.
Neil Adams introduced strikers Gary Hooper and Lewis Grabban, Redmond had an effort deflected behind from inside the area as the hosts looked to snatch it late on, but United saw out the four minutes of stoppage time to secure a valuable away point.