‘They gave it a right good go’ - Former England strikers praise City’s efforts against United
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Norwich City’s cruel FA Cup quarter-final defeat to Manchester United was beamed live to the nation on BBC One and saw Daniel Farke’s team earn praise from former England strikers Alan Shearer and Ian Wright.
The BBC have announced that their audience peaked at 6.4 million viewers during United’s 2-1 win after extra-time at Carrow Road, as the Canaries first FA Cup quarter-final since 1992 was played behind closed doors.
Odion Ighalo put the visitors ahead in the 51st minute but Todd Cantwell equalised with a fine strike in the 75th minute, only for Timm Klose to be sent off in the 89th minute and Harry Maguire to snatch the win with two minutes remaining of extra-time.
“They gave it a right good go in the second half,” former England skipper Shearer said of City after the game. “They were the better team I thought in the second half. They showed character in coming back, it wouldn’t have been easy for them, we said they had to gamble a little bit.
“A wonderful strike, I do think the goalkeeper should do a little bit better, he might have been blocked a bit by Maguire. But from then on Norwich had one or two chances themselves to go and win the game, so they made it really tough for Man United.”
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Maguire was named Man of the Match during the live coverage but Arsenal legend Wright took issue with that, after a succession of fine saves from Canaries keeper Tim Krul, including a breathtaking denial of Maguire during extra-time.
“It was a very good save, he made a couple before that as well,” Wright said in the BBC studio. “Sometimes someone from the losing team doesn’t get it (Man of the Match), but for me that game is well and truly finished without Tim Krul.
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“I thought he played very well - looked like he was looking forward to the penalties as well because he was doing everything to get there.”
Wright was also impressed with the impact of winger Onel Hernandez, who replaced Lukas Rupp in the 62nd minute, who was struggling with a hip issue.
The speedy Cuban had started the 1-0 home defeat to Everton in the Premier League on Wednesday and looked bright before tiring in the second half as he makes his way back from knee surgery in February.
“I look at the Norwich side and when I see Onel Hernandez come on, I thought he caused them a lot of problems with his pace,” added Wright. “For me, I thought that was a bit of a mistake from the manager, he should have started instead of Rupp.”