‘Ninety points is usually enough’ - Dowell buzzing for City’s big day
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Norwich City may have been made to wait a little bit longer for their promotion to be secured but match-winner Kieran Dowell knows that special achievement is within touching distance.
The midfielder curled home a superb free-kick midway through the first half at Pride Park and it proved to be the only goal against Derby, maintaining the Championship leaders’ 17-point cushion to third-placed Brentford.
With both the Bees and Swansea winning, the victory wasn’t enough to mathematically confirm promotion but just two points from the final five matches would seal the deal, even in the unlikely scenario of Brentford and the Swans winning all of their remaining six games.
“Pretty close,” Dowell admitted with a smile when asked about promotion.
“Ninety points is usually enough to get you promoted so it’s great to do that with five games left.
“Hopefully, fingers crossed, it’s just a matter of time now.”
Watford also won on Friday night so remain eight points behind in second, with the Hornets having a trip to mid-table Luton on Saturday ahead of a potential title decider at Carrow Road three days later.
“We want to just enjoy our football, win as many games as possible,” Dowell continued.
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“It’s been a long hard season, we can just enjoy the last few games now and try to win the league as well.”
It was a third goal in five games for the former Everton attacker, extending City’s unbeaten run to 13 games with the winner against one of his former loan clubs.
Wayne Rooney’s Rams made the visitors work hard for their three points though, showing real spirit as they continue to glance nervously at their seven-point gap to the relegation zone.
“In the first half Derby sat off us a lot, really tried to frustrate us from the first minute, so it was a case of trying to break them down,” Dowell said.
“We didn’t have too many chances in the first half, they had lots of men behind the ball, blocking shots and stuff like that.
“So it wasn’t as free-flowing as we would have liked but you take a win at the end of the day.”