Amadou grabs his chance to show midfield capabilities for Canaries
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Our latest Norwich City player watch followed Ibrahim Amadou as the Sevilla loanee got his midfield chance during Sunday’s 2-2 home draw with Arsenal.
5 - Matteo Guendouzi squeezes a pass beyond Amadou, Alexandre Lacazette slips in the box and Sam Byram with a great block of Joe Willock's shot, Lacazette scuffs the loose ball and Tim Krul gets it behind.
6 - Blasts a low shot comfortably wide after some lively link play between Onel Hernandez, Todd Cantwell and Sam Byram on the left.
8 - Todd Cantwell is crowded out but Amadou closes down Xhaka to force Arsenal backwards.
9 - Blocks Chambers' shot behind after Byram is caught out of position.
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27 - One of four City players encroaching in the box as Krul saves Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's penalty, VAR penalises Max Aarons as he had cleared the ball. Aubameyang scores his second attempt.
35 - Poor pass straight to Guendouzi, Lacazette fouls Christoph Zimmermann to let him off the hook.
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40 - Kenny McLean delivers corner from the left, no-one gets their head on it, Amadou tries to control and hit the bouncing ball but blasts wide.
42 - In the thick of the passing but then Godfrey loses possession trying to attack - Amadou with a vital interception to prevent the counter, exactly where he needed to be on halfway.
47 - Stalks Guendouzi but just can't intercept the pass.
51 - Proper defensive midfielder's tackle from Amadou, nicks the ball off Guendouzi and puts his shoulder in to leave him on the floor as well, really settling into his role.
56 - Draws a huge roar from the crowd as he sweeps in to take the ball cleanly from Willock and end an attack.
59 - Snaps into a tackle on Granit Xhaka in the Arsenal half, Teemu Pukki nudges the ball into McLean's path and clean through, fires towards bottom-right corner and keeper makes a superb sprawling save. Shortly before that Xhaka had fouled a stretching Amadou and referee played advantage.
62 - Pops up on the right and exchanges a one-two with Aarons, low shot from the right-back against an Arsenal defender, ball falls kindly for Cantwell but drags shot just wide of right post with Leno exposed.
63 - Aarons heads clear, Amadou passes right to Cantwell who superbly hurdles Guendouzi and gets Pukki into the right channel, the striker twists inside but doesn't connect properly with a low shot and Bernd Leno saves with his feet.
75 - Goes down holding his head after challenging Xhaka in the air for a Tim Krul kick, but gets up after a few seconds and is okay to continue.
77 - Vital positioning as Cantwell can't rob Mesut Ozil of possession on the left.
79 - Nearly a disastrous moment as Amadou gets a back-pass all wrong and Krul has to tackle Aubameyang to deny a shot.
81 - Again sharp to Guendouzi on the ball but can't prevent cross from the right, City clear.
87 - In the thick of the passing, then bursts forward and McLean finds him, gets a shot horribly wrong, Hernandez keeps alive, comes to him again and fluffs the shot on the edge of the box - with head coach Daniel Farke throwing his hands in the air in exasperation.
90+4 - Heroic moment in the game's final seconds. Aarons wandered out of position chasing substitute Bukayo Saka, Sead Kolasinac moves to where Aarons should be after Zimmermann did his best to disrupt the attack, Emi Buendia misses the opportunity to bring him down and then ball falls perfectly for Lucas Torreira to pull the trigger on the edge of the box - but there was Amadou to brilliantly block the powerful shot with his legs.
VERDICT: Passing wasn't up to standard during the first 20 minutes but then started to look comfortable as he readjusted to his preferred defensive midfield moments. Some absolutely crucial work, none more so than that crucial late block, but some sloppy moments as well. Encouraging signs that City may finally have found the successor to Alex Tettey.
RATING: 7 out of 10