Premier League: Goals from Gary Hooper and Leroy Fer help Norwich beat West Brom
Last Updated: 07/12/13 8:04pm
Norwich won on their travels for just the second time this season thanks to a hard-fought 2-0 victory at West Bromwich Albion.
Best of the Match:
- Man of the match: Leroy Fer - The Dutch midfielder was outstanding, working hard for his side throughout the 90 minutes.
- Goal of the match: Gary Hooper - he scored the opener in the 13th minute, smashing an unstoppable drive into the bottom corner.
- Controversy of the match: Sessegnon's goalbound effort struck Martin Olsson on the arm, but referee Mark Clattenburg allowed play to continue.
- Chances of the game: Albion created more than 20 chances but the likes of Stephane Sessegnon and Shane Long failed to hit the back of the net.
- Sub of the match: Nathan Redmond tormented Liam Ridgewell in the first-half so much so that the defender was replaced at the break.
- Stat of the match: There have now been 24 goals in the final 15 minutes of games involving these two teams
- Talking point: Will this rare away win ease the pressure on Norwich boss Chris Hughton?
Gary Hooper opened the scoring in the 13th minute and Leroy Fer sealed the contest with a well-taken finish in the final minute.
West Brom had countless chances to take at least a point from this game with Stephane Sessegnon twice failing to convert great opportunities and Shane Long also guilty of being profligate in front of goal.
It is now one win in nine games for the Baggies, and Steve Clarke's side were booed off at full-time.
The midweek hiding against a Luis Suarez-inspired Liverpool at Anfield had put Canaries boss Chris Hughton's position under further scrutiny, but he would have been delighted with the way his side responded as they leapfrogged their opponents in the table.
After starting brightly they took the lead with a wonderful strike from Hooper.
Nathan Redmond fed Fer, who picked out the striker's run with the aid of a deflection off Diego Lugano's heel. The angle of the pass was taking Hooper away from goal but he fizzed a superb strike beyond Boaz Myhill.
Albion sought a quick response with Youssouf Mulumbu, back from suspension, firing straight at John Ruddy after nice link play with Morgan Amalfitano.
The Frenchman's teasing cross from the right then saw Victor Anichebe get in a header which Ruddy gratefully grasped.
Norwich were being penned in their own half but Johan Elmander should have done better from a quick break.
The Swede's flick-on found Hooper, who quickly returned him the ball. However, Elmander then ignored his better placed strike partner as he drove forward and saw his shot blocked.
The hosts were soon back on the offensive, with Ruddy tipping a fierce Anichebe shot wide of goal, before Sessegnon contrived to fail to make any contact with a Chris Brunt corner which found him unmarked.
It summed up West Brom's first half and Clarke made two changes at the break, bringing on Long and Saido Berahino for Liam Ridgewell and, surprisingly, Amalfitano.
They helped spark Albion into a very strong start to the second half and they could have had a penalty when a Sessegnon shot, after a goalmouth scramble, struck Martin Olsson on the arm as he made the block.
They should have been level in the 52nd minute when Sessegnon surged past two Norwich defenders into the box, but the Frenchman rolled his shot wide of the post having beaten the advancing Ruddy.
At the other end Redmond's pace proved too much to handle for Uruguay defender Lugano, whose vulnerability will doubtless be noted by England manager Roy Hodgson, but the winger's pull-back could not find Hooper.
Sessegnon then spurned another chance after Olsson had gifted the ball to him six yards out, with Ruddy making the save.
Long became the latest man to miss for West Brom a few moments later.
Mulumbu's deflected shot fell to him in the area, but his shot was too tame to beat Ruddy.
Mulumbu fired an effort wide but all the home side's pressure came to nothing and they were punished as Redmond found Fer for the midfielder to cut inside and fire low beyond a flat-footed Myhill with a minute remaining.
Barclays Premier League
|12||West Ham United||38||47|
|13||West Bromwich Albion||38||44|
|20||Queens Park Rangers||38||30|
West Brom v Norwich
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Steve Clarke was left bemoaning West Brom's inability to convert a series of chances after they lost 2-0 to Norwich.