Late Rooney free-kick sinks Canaries after Pukki penalty slip
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Wayne Rooney’s stunning late free-kick condemned Norwich City to their second straight Championship defeat – with Teemu Pukki missing a penalty as Derby County beat the Canaries 1-0 at Carrow Road.
Prior to this fixture – the Rams hadn’t picked up a single Championship point and were on the receiving end of a thrashing to Blackburn Rovers at Pride Park last weekend. Rooney’s quality proved the difference despite City having the majority of possession throughout the fixture.
Emi Buendia returned to the Canaries starting XI despite being on the receiving end of Daniel Farke’s blunt comments after City’s defeat to Bournemouth last week. Marco Stiepermann was recalled to the side to make his first appearance since the opening day of the season.
Todd Cantwell was once again left out of the squad as speculation linking him with a move away from Carrow Road persists - although City are yet to receive a bid for the midfielder. Grant Hanley made the bench after returning from injury.
Phillip Cocu was reported to have led a heart-to-heart meeting following the 4-0 drubbing against Blackburn last weekend and made five changes to his starting line-up. England’s leading goalscorer captained the side – with former City goalkeeper David Marshall between the sticks for the Rams.
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City were in the ascendancy from the off – enjoying the possession being gifted to them by Derby’s deep defensive shape.
Buendia was the protagonist in constructing the Canaries first major chance of the game after finding Teemu Pukki in space with a cute through pass. The Finn looked to square it for Onel Hernandez to tap in – but Nathan Byrne recovered well to clear.
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Derby sought to hit City on the counter attack – with Rooney at the heart of their efforts to get up the pitch.
The 34-year-old sent Duane Holmes racing down the right before the pacey winger looked to find Rooney at the back post. He attempted to volley the ball beyond Tim Krul but scuffed his effort and failed to test the Dutch international.
City dominated the ball – but Derby were resilient and compact. Buendia appeared the likeliest source of offensive productivity, and he weaved his way through several defenders before attempting to tee up Hernandez, but Byrne intercepted at the back post.
Six minutes after the restart – the Canaries were awarded a penalty. Neat interchanging football saw Buendia tee up Rupp in the area. He found Hernandez who went for goal but his effort was blocked by George Evans’ arm, leaving referee Stuart Attwell with little choice but to point to the spot.
Pukki was the man chosen to step up. As the Finnish international went to make contact with the ball, he slipped and his skied his effort over the bar.
City were recycling possession effectively but chances remained at a preminum for both sides. It was the Rams that had a flurry of chances after Matt Clarke headed a corner wide. Minutes after, Morgan Whittaker’s drive through midfield left him with room to shoot from range – but Krul’s strong hand pushed it away.
The Canaries continued probing for a breakthrough – Rupp’s pass to Buendia allowed the Argentine to push it onto Oliver Skipp. His pass to Aarons allowed the youngster to cross but Rupp got underneath the ball and looped his header over.
Aarons had a chance to open the scoring after racing onto a beautifully floated pass from substitute Mario Vrancic. City’s right-back volleyed towards goal but Marshall produced an excellent save to deny the Canaries.
Jason Knight’s surging run past City defenders nearly saw the youngster go through on goal – leaving Rupp to cynically foul him on the outside of the box. Rooney stood over the free-kick before curling it into the top corner of the net to put the visitors ahead.
City had a late chance to equalise through Jordan Hugill. Skipp’s cross found the towering striker at the back post, his head was put back across goal only for Marshall to save expertly to deny City a point.
- Norwich City (4-2-3-1): Krul; Aarons, Zimmermann (C), Gibson, Quintilla; Rupp, Skipp; Buendia (Hugill, 84), Stiepermann (Vrancic, 69), Hernandez (Idah, 57); Pukki. Subs not used: McGovern (GK), Hanley, Tettey, McLean
- Bookings: Buendia (foul on Knight, 45), Zimmermann (foul on Jozwiak, 54), Rupp (foul on Knight, 86)
- Goals: None
- Derby County (4-2-3-1): Marshall; Byrne, Davies, Clarke, Buchanan; Shinnie, Evans; Holmes (Whittaker, 62), Knight, Jozwiak (Bird, 80); Rooney (C) (Marriott, 88). Subs not used: Roos (GK), Wierik, Forsyth, Marriott, Hector-Ingram
- Bookings: Shinnie (foul on Skipp, 79), Knight (dissent, 79)
- Goals: Rooney 87
- Added on time: 1 min/ 4 mins
- Referee: Stuart Attwell