STARTING XIs: Three changes and very young bench for injury-hit City against Coventry

Michael McGovern has urged Norwich City to re-write their Premier League ending. Picture: Michael Se

Michael McGovern starts for Norwich City against Coventry, having started just one of the Canaries' last 149 league matches - Credit: Michael Sedgwick/Focus Images Ltd

Marco Stiepermann starts up front as injury-hit Norwich City are forced into three changes to their starting XI against Coventry this afternoon, with five academy youngsters on the bench. 

Mario Vrancic comes in for Teemu Pukki to play just behind Stiepermann, who did play as a striker during his younger years, and Przemek Placheta replaces Emi Buendia on the wing as the Argentine serves a one-game ban. 

Michael McGovern also replaces Tim Krul in goal, with the Canaries number one expected to miss around three weeks with a thigh strain, and youngster Daniel Barden provides cover. 

But City have only named six of their permitted nine substitutes, of which they are allowed to bring on five, with striker Tom Dickson-Peters and midfielder Reece McAlear keeping their places on the bench after being unused during the 3-2 win at Stoke on Tuesday. 

Centre-back Andrew Omobamidele joins senior defender Christoph Zimmermann among the substitutes while striker Tyrese Omotoye comes on to the bench after returning from injury. 

The Canaries are without 12 players through injury, with striker Pukki missing with a minor hamstring strain and hoping to return at Luton on Wednesday. 

Fellow strikers Jordan Hugill and Adam Idah are also missing, with Hugill hoping to return from a shoulder in a couple of weeks and Idah expected to be out until February with a knee problem. 

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Young full-back Bali Mumba is also out until February with a knee injury, while full-back Sam Byram (hamstring), midfielder Kieran Dowell (ankle) and winger Onel Hernandez (groin). 

Midfielders Lukas Rupp (hamstring) and Todd Cantwell (hip) are also out short term, Kenny McLean could be out for four months with a knee injury and left-back Xavi Quintilla is struggling to overcome his own hip issue. 

Despite all of those issues Norwich started the weekend top of the Championship table and are looking to go a 10th game unbeaten. 

Coventry make five changes, with Ben Wilson starting in goal and Amadou Bakayoko starting up front. 

The Sky Blues are without keeper Marko Marosi, who suffered facial injuries during a 1-0 home win over Cardiff on Wednesday, only a second win in 12 games for Mark Robins’ promoted side. 

Former Canaries keeper Lee Camp has been brought in but starts on the bench. 

Norwich loanee Sam McCallum is also ineligible for the game, having featured regularly since returning to his former club for the season – although the full-back can be recalled during the January transfer window. 

NORWICH (4-2-3-1): McGovern; Aarons, Hanley (C), Gibson, Sorensen; Skipp, Tettey; Placheta, Vrancic, Martin; Stiepermann. Subs: Barden (GK), Zimmermann, Omobamidele, McAlear, Omotoye, Dickson-Peters 

COVENTRY (4-2-3-1): Wilson; Dabo, McFadzean, Hyam, Ostigard; Kelly (C), Allen; Giles, Sheaf, O’Hare; Bakayoko. Subs: Camp (GK), Biamou, Jobello, Walker, Shipley, Thompson, Hamer, Bapaga, Rowe 

REFEREE: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)


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