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Swansea frustrate Norwich’s quest for a play-off place

27 Apr 2024 3 minute read
Swansea City’s Harry Darling battles for the ball against Norwich City’s Josh Sargent during the Sky Bet Championship match at Carrow Road, Norwich. Credit: Rhianna Chadwick/PA Wire.

Norwich missed the chance to all-but secure their place in the Championship play-offs when they were held to a frustrating 2-2 draw by Swansea at Carrow Road.

The Canaries went behind midway through the first half when Jamie Paterson fired home but were ahead at the break thanks to goals from Gabriel Sara – a real stunner – and top scorer Josh Sargent.

But the impressive Swans equalised early in the second period through a Matt Grimes penalty and held on for a deserved point.

Both sides came close to scoring in a frenetic start, with a superb block from Ben Cabango denying Borja Sainz and a combination of Angus Gunn and Shane Duffy thwarting Liam Cullen at the other end.

With nothing by pride to play for the Swans gave the hosts plenty to think about in the early stages and it was no big surprise when they took the lead on 24 minutes.

After a careless turnover gifted them possession they worked the ball forward quickly, with Paterson using the space he found himself in to good effect by blasting the ball high into the net.

Norwich responded well and Sargent was foiled by a good save from Carl Rushworth before they equalised in spectacular fashion 10 minutes later.

With the home defence unwisely opting to back off, Sara was able to comfortably manoeuvre himself into a shooting position before letting fly from 25 yards and brilliantly finding the top corner of the net.

The Canaries were now firmly in the driving seat and moved ahead in the third of six minutes of added time, with talented Brazilian Sara once again involved.

This time it was a sumptuous assist, with a perfectly-weighted cross to the back post allowing Sargent to nod home across the keeper for his 16th goal of the season.

The game took another turn when Swansea got themselves back on level terms from the penalty spot eight minutes after the restart.

Gunn was penalised for upending Ronald in the box and visiting skipper Grimes stepped up to thump the ball home from the spot.

The hosts nearly regained the lead midway the second half when it took a goalline clearance from Cabango to keep out a close-range Shane Duffy header.

There was then a repeat performance as Jamal Lowe was perfectly positioned to keep out another towering header from the big Irish defender.

Lowe also went close as the Swans mounted a rare counter-attack while Marcelino Nunez steered a stoppage-time effort just wide as the spoils were shared.

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