Norwich - Sunderland Preview: Canaries fear extending Premier League penalty record in search of first home win
Having conceded a spot-kick in an unprecedented five consecutive matches, Paul Lambert's side look to secure back-to-back victories and put the pressure back on Steve Bruce
By George Ankers
Naughton, R Martin, Barnett, Tierney
Bennett, Hoolahan, Johnson, Pilkington
O’Shea, Brown, Bramble, Richardson
El Mohamady, Larsson, Gardner, Vaughan Sessegnon
It’s usually anyone’s guess how Paul Lambert will line his team up, with changes coming in every game, but captain Grant Holt is likely to return in front of the home crowd. Wes Hoolahan, who has drawn praise from his manager for his recent performances, should keep his place and may feature at the top of a midfield diamond as he did so effectively last season. In the continued absence of three central defenders due to injury, right-back Russell Martin may continue in the middle after acquitting himself well against Bolton.
Steve Bruce is expected to keep faith in the side that beat Stoke City so comprehensively last weekend, with Arsenal loanee Nicklas Bendnter continuing to lead the line on his own. Captain Lee Cattermole was deemed unfit for the last match and was forced to watch from the bench, which may also be his fate at Carrow Road given the quality of the team's performance last week.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Norwich City have set a new Premier League record of giving away a penalty in five consecutive games, never failing to concede one so far this season.
- No one has yet scored more than one goal for the Canaries this season, with each of their five so far coming from different players.
- Sunderland have not won a Premier League match on a Monday since 2002, failing in 13 attempts since then.
- New striker Nicklas Bendtner (pictured right) has not scored a league goal in 2011.
- The last five times that these two sides met in the league, the match finished 1-0 to the home team.
- Norwich won home and away the last time these clubs were in the same league – in the 1990-91 season.
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Top 3 Predictions
Norwich City 1-2 Sunderland
- 15.14 %
Norwich City 0-1 Sunderland
- 14.87 %
Norwich City 0-2 Sunderland
- 14.6 %
|Premier League (EPL)||17 Mar 2013||Sunderland 1 - Norwich City 1|
|Premier League (EPL)||2 Dec 2012||Norwich City 2 - Sunderland 1|
|Premier League (EPL)||1 Feb 2012||Sunderland 3 - Norwich City 0|
|Premier League (EPL)||26 Sep 2011||Norwich City 2 - Sunderland 1|
|12 May 2013||Norwich City 4 - West Bromwich Albion 0||EPL|
|4 May 2013||Norwich City 1 - Aston Villa 2||EPL|
|27 Apr 2013||Stoke City 1 - Norwich City 0||EPL|
|20 Apr 2013||Norwich City 2 - Reading 1||EPL|
|13 Apr 2013||Arsenal FC 3 - Norwich City 1||EPL|
|Returns:||Norwich City £23.80||Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|Returns:||Draw £210.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Sunderland £810.00||Sign up today with BetVictor and get a £25 FREE BET!|
|44||Ritchie De Laet||Defender|
|27||Ahmed El Mohamady||Midfielder|
Converted midfielder Kieran Richardson is still the weak point of the Sunderland back four, and this man could expose his weaknesses. Having started the season in decent but not exceptional form, the pacy former Brighton winger could stamp his mark on Carrow Road with a match-winning performance on Monday.
With the Canaries likely to be more scared than usual to risk conceding penalties, the tall striker should take the initiative and really put himself about trying to win balls and hold up play, and just see what happens. The Dane will feel he can target the out-of-position Russell Martin at centre-back and could prosper if not properly dealt with.
Both sides come into this game buoyed by victories last weekend. Three points at the Reebok Stadium will fire the Canaries up and they will see this as a winnable fixture, but the same will go for the Black Cats after demolishing Stoke. The pressure would be right back on Steve Bruce if his side fail to win here but, after a busy summer of transfer activity, the jury is still out on whether his new-look Sunderland are less inconsistent than the previous one. Both sides are prone to the odd defensive error and an open game will most likely end in a draw.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed