‘Teemu is one of the most outstanding players in this league’ - Farke hails Canaries’ marksman

Teemu Pukki scored his first league goal of the season in Norwich City's 2-2 Championship draw again

Teemu Pukki scored his first league goal of the season in Norwich City's 2-2 Championship draw against Preston Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Bad news for Championship defenders. The old Teemu Pukki is back to lead the charge for Norwich City.

Pukki notched his first goal in open play for the Canaries since December 2019, to cap a vibrant outing in the 2-2 league draw against Preston.

The Finn’s trademark razor sharp movement saw him glance Xavi Quintilla’s first half cross past Declan Rudd.

Pukki was only later denied a winner by Rudd’s acrobatics in stoppage time, but his head coach, Daniel Farke, saw enough to suggest the 30-year-old is in the groove.

“Yes, he seems to have his instinct back and the smell for goals,” said Farke. “In that last scene even you could see the movement to be there on the first post, and it was a more than decent save from Declan Rudd. Teemu is one of the most outstanding players for me in this league over the first two game days. He was crucial to the win at Huddersfield and now to getting us a point against Preston.

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“It is not just what he can bring us in terms of his goals or his general play. We are also still a very, very young side. We need his leadership and his experience in the dressing room, or in difficult periods on the pitch.

“You can only say many compliments.

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“Two games, four points. It is not a bad average to start with. What also pleases me is unlike last season we have already shown we can turn a game and we have that ability to score a lot of late goals, from minute 80 onwards, which was a hallmark of the title winning season.

“The hunger was still there. I like this spirit, to keep going until the last second.”

Summer signing Przemyslaw Placheta rifled a late equaliser in an eye-catching introduction following the early injury to Kieran Dowell.

“He has so much pace and he can have an impact in behind for us,” said Farke. “He started on the right wing then we changed the system a bit and he was in the left wing back role.

“Yes, he missed a big chance in the second half but I liked his attitude to say I can’t influence what has happened in the past, but I can still do something about this in the last minutes.

“He was calm when it mattered and it was a decent finish. We were missing some of our creative players but I hope the fluent football improves.”

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