Fox catches Canaries
Fox nets late winner to break Canaries' hearts
Last Updated: 28/02/09 5:44pm
Fox: Late winner
Norwich dropped to second-from-bottom in the Championship - and four points from safety - after a 2-1 home reverse to resurgent Coventry.
Daniel Fox netted a 73rd minute winner for the Sky Blues to break the Canaries' hearts after they had battled back into the game.
Jordan Henderson had opened the scoring for the visitors, who are now unbeaten in six in all competitions, but Jonathan Grounds had then given Norwich hope with an equaliser early in the second half.
The Canaries started the day in the relegation zone with no league win in six, but manager Bryan Gunn opted to remain faithful to the starting XI that earned a 1-1 draw with Burnley last weekend, with Jamie Cureton starting his 100th game in a Norwich shirt.
The Sky Blues made three changes to the side which earned a place in the FA Cup quarter-finals by beating Blackburn in midweek.
Ben Turner, Michael Doyle and Freddy Eastwood all dropped to the bench as manager Chris Coleman welcomed back Scott Dann, David Bell and Guillaume Beuzelin.
Norwich began with all the urgency of a team desperately in need of three home points. Lee Croft had their first sight of goal in the fifth minute but fired his ambitious long-range drive high and wide.
The hosts were handed an early reprieve when Bell connected with Henderson's free-kick but somehow headed wide from six yards.
But in the 19th minute, it was that same combination which put the Sky Blues ahead.
Bell this time delivered the lofted ball from the left wing which fell in the six-yard box for Henderson, who lashed his right-foot drive past David Marshall and high into the centre of the goal.
Coventry threatened again just moments after taking the lead. Fox tried his luck with a rasping drive from the edge of the box, only to see Gary Doherty make a well-timed interception.
Chances for Norwich were few and far between. They came close just before the break when Sammy Clingan's corner found Jason Shackell at the far post, but his header was claimed by Keiren Westwood.
After the interval, the Canaries started positively and tested Westwood within moments. Mark Fotheringham latched on to Croft's cross, and his left-footed effort required a firm hand from the Coventry stopper.
But Westwood was helpless to prevent Norwich's leveller six minutes later. The ball fell at the feet of Grounds, who had time to compose himself before picking his spot and firing low into the back of the net.
Clinton Morrison almost hit an instant response for Coventry, picking up Aron Gunnarsson's inch-perfect ball before curling a neat effort inches past the left post.
But in the 73rd minute, Coventry's persistence paid off. Fox, a constant threat, capped a moment of individual brilliance with a perfect left-foot strike which flew past Marshall and curled into the top right corner.
Norwich pushed hard until the end and had two penalty appeals turned away in the dying stages as frustration grew - but defeat keeps them deep in the mire.
Sky Bet Championship
Sat 28th Feb
Reading0 - 1N Forest
Swansea1 - 1Charlton
Southampton1 - 0Cardiff
Preston3 - 2Ipswich
Wolves0 - 1Plymouth
Bristol C0 - 0Blackpool
Barnsley2 - 1QPR
Norwich1 - 2Coventry
Watford2 - 0C Palace
Burnley2 - 4Sheff Wed
Sky Bet Championship
|2||Queens Park Rangers||19||39|
|10||Brighton and Hove Albion||19||28|