Dereham Town 1, Norwich City XI 1
SLIDESHOW: New signing Paul McVeigh celebrated completing his dramatic return to Norwich City with a slick first performance at hard working Dereham. The 31–year-old free agent put pen to paper on a one-year deal having suitably impressed City boss Bryan Gunn during pre-season.
New signing Paul McVeigh celebrated completing his dramatic return to Norwich City with a slick first performance at hard working Dereham.
The 31-year-old free agent put pen to paper on a one-year deal having suitably impressed City boss Bryan Gunn during pre-season.
The Northern Irishman and Academy product Tom Adeyemi looked the pick of the first half performers in a Norwich XI made up of youngsters, the club's young professionals and McVeigh.
A Graham Barrett 25-yarder had given Dereham Town a dream start at a packed Aldiss Park.
The Magpies number 10 struck with just two minutes on the watch, although Arran Lee-Barrett - in his first game since joining the Canaries on trial - will be slightly disappointed not to have kept the effort out.
But a much improved team performance in the second half saw substitute Josh Dawkin drill home in style from Nicholas Chrysantho's corner to bag the goal City's second half possession deserved and protect City's unbeaten pre-season record.
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The visitors struggled to create first half chances against a willing and able Dereham, and the home side earning sights on goal of their own.
Nicky Howell teed up Paul Atkins in the six yard box but he could not quite connect as the linesman flagged for offside.
City nearly found a way in when Town keeper John Higgs failed to make contact with the ball, but although striker Troy Powell looked certain to score, Ollie Willis produced an excellent block to snuff out the danger.
Richard Brindley replaced centre-back Arghus on 20 minutes after the defender suffered a minor injury, but despite Paul McVeigh - the only City player on show with past first team experience - and the lively Tom Adeyemi trying to make something happen, Dereham continued to have the better chances, City's final ball letting them down too often.
In fact, Howell and Atkins both had chances to double the lead, but fell victim to an unlucky ricochet and poor finish respectively.
City reserve boss Ian Crook made changes at the interval, bringing on Josh Dawkin, Johnbull Osemwegie for McVeigh and Adeyemi - and the changes also brought some sustained pressure for the League One visitors.
Dario Dumic blazed over from distance and Nicholas Chrysantho's cross deserved better than to be missed by a host of attacking heads.
The impressive George Francomb saw his free-kick from 25 yards extravagantly tipped over by Higgs as Norwich continued to probe.
Dawkin struck in style in the final 10 minutes but there was still time for Lee-Barrett to embarrassingly lose possession to Robbie Harris - the striker scuffing his effort on goal - and the City defence scrambling clear in the dying minutes.
t Norwich City: Lee-Barrett, Francomb, Mtandari, Arghus (Brindley, 20), Dumic, Adeyemi (Osemwegie, 45), Slegg (Lathrope, 86), Chrysantho, Powell (Clarke, 86), Kelly (Reeves, 86), McVeigh (Dawkin, 45)
Sub not used: Steer (GK)
t Referee: M. George