Pukki misses Emi but backs City to spark

Teemu Pukki forged a potent spearhead at Norwich City with Emi Buendia before his move to Aston Villa

Teemu Pukki forged a potent spearhead at Norwich City with Emi Buendia before his move to Aston Villa - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Teemu Pukki is missing his old sidekick Emi Buendia but the striker is adamant Norwich City have the firepower to kick on in the Premier League. 

Pukki formed a deadly double act with the Argentine that landed two Championship titles, and numerous individual awards for the pair, before Buendia’s club record summer move to Aston Villa. 

The Finn has two top flight goals this campaign in a new look formation with a new partner for now in Josh Sargent. 

“Of course, players of his level are missed. Emi is definitely one of the best I’ve played with,” said Pukki, who is with the Finland squad preparing for Saturday’s World Cup qualifier against Ukraine. “Especially at the level of personal chemistry, our thoughts matched up really well.  

"The ideas with Buendia coincided.  

“The early season hasn't been easy. We've been pretty good in a lot of the matches, but then the opponent has capitalised on our mistakes. I think we have so much potential that we can improve. Luckily now finally we have a point on the board. I believe we can turn it around. We have all the players. 

"Even on a personal level, I can’t be happy with the beginning of the season. Everyone needs to improve. Hopefully this one point will give us a more positive starting point for future games. The season is just beginning and there is still a long way to go.” 

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Pukki has endured, by his high standards, a barren spell for his country, with his last goal coming in the reverse fixture to salvage a 1-1 draw against the Ukrainians in March.

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Finland go into Saturday’s home return level on points, with a game in hand, as the duo fight it out for second spot in Group D behind France.  

“Of course, I am very hungry to get a taste of the goals again,” he told a press conference with Finnish media. “Whenever you go to the field, you want to score goals and that is the job of our attackers. 

"There is a strong desire to score goals for the national team and help the team in that way, but luckily ‘Jolle’ (Joel Pohjanpalo) has been in a really good mood, and has made important goals for us to put ourselves in a pretty positive situation in the group.” 

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