Hoolahan tries to keep Norwich moving forward in losing cause at Cardiff – as Irish playmaker enters City’’s all-time top 20

Wes Hoolahan of Norwich and Joe Ralls of Cardiff City in action during the Sky Bet Championship matc

Wes Hoolahan of Norwich and Joe Ralls of Cardiff City in action during the Sky Bet Championship match at the Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Our latest Canaries player watch followed the fortunes of veteran playmaker Wes Hoolahan, during Norwich City’s 3-1 loss at high-flying Cardiff last night. Here’s how his match unfolded...

Wes Hoolahan

6 – Grant Hanley deals with long throw from the right from Sean Morrison, just about, then Hoolahan wins a goal-kick off the shins of Morrison.

17 – Controls Ivo Pinto’s throw on the right, plays James Maddison in but he’s clipped by Loic Damour on the edge of the box. Hoolahan crosses and Hanley rises highest but nods header towards keeper Neil Etheridge.

19 – Tries to slip Nelson Oliveira clean through into the left channel but Morrison steps across to intercept.

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21 – Dinks a chipped ball over the Bluebirds’ defence but Josh Murphy can’t control to burst through on goal.

27 – Weaves past a couple of challenges but is clipped by Morrison, central Maddison free-kick comes to nothing.

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31 – Dispossess Bennett, plays in Pinto, who wins a corner. Mario Vrancic corner fumbled away by Etheridge.

42 – Stiepermann plays him into the box, loses possession with flick as he beats Sol Bamba but Morrison clears.

45+1 – Reed steels possession, City break through Oliveira, with Hoolahan totally free to his right but selfishly opts to beat his man and fire a weak shot. Hoolahan is absolutely furious but they hug and make up before the break.

53 – Clips Lee Tomlin on the edge of the box, free-kick causes havoc and Ralls thrashes a shot against the underside of the bar which bounces close.

60 – Fills in at right-back after Pinto charged forward but couldn’t reach a long Reed pass, tackles Junior Hoilett and Oliveira counters.

66 – Vrancic takes corner on the left short, Hoolahan loses possession and Mendez-Laing sprints the length of the pitch but heavy touch allows Gunn to thwart.

73 – Robbed by Morrison in midfield but Cardiff move breaks down.

88 – Breaks down the left, crosses but only Alex Pritchard is waiting and Bamba heads away.

Verdict: City’s brightest outlet in the first half before fading, as his 337th appearance brought him level with George Martin at 20th in the club’s all-time appearances list. Still capable of opening teams up at this level but needs a more solid foundation in support.

Rating: 7 out of 10

• Catch up with all the post-match reaction and analysis in our Matchday blog at pinkun.com/live

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