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27 April 2013
• Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire
Referee: A. Taylor
• Attendance: 27488
C. Adam 46'
It certainly wasn't a classic but it was all about the result for Stoke. That's all from me, Ryan Bailey, thanks for joining me this afternoon and stick with Goal.com for all the reaction.
Meanwhile, Norwich are left looking nervously over their shoulders with three games to go. The Canaries are four points clear of the drop-zone.
A hard-fought win leaves Stoke in 12th place and opens up a six-point gap between the Potters and the relegation zone.
And that's it! Stoke record back-to-back victories for the first time since early December and in the process surely secure their Premier League status.
90' + 5'
Yellow CardJonathan Walters
90' + 4'
We've played the four minutes which were added as the home fans find their voices.
90' + 3'
Just a minute or so now to hold on, they're nearly there as Walters is booked for throwing the ball away.
90' + 3'
and a long throw comes to nothing, much to the relief of the home fans and indeed manager.
90' + 3'
Nervy moments for the home side as Norwich launch a last ditch attack...
90' + 1'
Adam, who has been the standout player today, does well to win a corner for the home side as they continue to wind the clock down.
Yellow CardBradley Johnson
Four minutes have been added here, can Norwich snatch a crucial point?
Another stoppage in play disrupts any momentum Norwich are trying to build.
Time running out for Norwich as Charlie Adam is named the sponsor's man of the match.
Anthony Pilkington comes on for defender Bassong, who has sustained a knock.
N'Zonzi rifles one in from 20 yards and Crouch makes a horrid mess of the rebound as he shoots wide from close range but his blushes are spared as the offside flag is raised.
Holt and Robert Huth involved in some pushing and shoving off the ball and the referee is forced to step in.
The Canaries continue to lob balls into the box but Stoke are more than capable of dealing with that sort of threat given their height. The visitors will have to change their approach if they are to get something from this game.
Stoke are sitting very deep at the minute but Norwich are yet to create anything of note.
Adam picks the ball up in a pocket of space outside the Norwich box but fires high and wide. Stoke's lead remains a slender one.
The home fans have just gone a bit quiet as we head towards the last ten minutes. Jerome has worked very hard this afternoon and is replaced by Matthew Etherington.
Stoke are just sitting a bit deep and allowing Norwich to apply some pressure.
Norwich have only won one of the previous 15 Premier League matches this season when they’ve conceded the opening goal.
It's been a very stop-start game with plenty of fouls and stoppages for injuries. Meanwhile, Norwich make their second change with Elliott Bennett coming on for Snodgrass.
Half-chance for Stoke but N'Zonzi fires wide from a tight angle.
Just twenty minutes remaining for the visitors to get themselves back into the game and at the minute they don't look like doing so. They have lacked ideas going forward and Stoke have dealt with Holt comfortably.
Snodgrass does well to beat his man on the right before looping in a cross but Begovic claims well.
Norwich make their first change as they go in search of an equaliser - Wes Hoolahan comes on for Tettey.
Whelan is unable to continue with Dean Whitehead taking his place in the hosts' engine room.
Big chance for Stoke to double their lead as Adam does brilliantly to win the ball on the right and then get away to the byline before squaring to the unmarked Crouch but the tall striker completely misses the ball.
Tony Pulis has been forced into a change with the injured Andy Wilkinson replaced by Geoff Cameron.
Whelan looks to be ok for the time being but Chris Hughton needs to make a change of his own. The Canaries have looked clueless in attack so far.
Adam whips in a dangerous free-kick which just evades Cameron Jerome before Bunn claims it under pressure.
Shotton with a long throw and the ball is then fizzed across goal but there is nobody on the end of it while it looks like Glenn Whelan is going to be replaced. The Irish midfielder went down clutching his hamstring.
The game has returned to the scrappy state it was in before the interval with neither side able to keep hold of the ball for any length of time.
Norwich have responded well to going behind but have yet to really trouble Begovic. That goal has lifted the home crowd and there is a feeling of relief around the Britannia.
From Opta Stats on Twitter: "Charlie Adam's goal is only Stoke's second in their last five Premier League home games"
Long ball from the back and Crouch wins the header. Adam gambles on it and makes a good run. He then nods it away from the defender before sweeping the ball past Bunn to give Stoke the lead.
Back underway at the Britannia Stadium.
Goal.com's Nicholas McGee reports from the Britannia Stadium: "Half-Time and I literally have nothing to report, there have been no shots on target, no close calls, no woodwork rattlers, no nothing. Well aside, from the stupidity of Steven Nzonzi, who should have been dismissed following an awful tackle on Kei Kamara after earlier blocking team-mate Cameron Jerome's far-post effort with his arm. Things can only improve, as it surely cannot get any worse."
45' + 2'
Referee Anthony Taylor brings a fierce but very dull first half to a close with little to speak about in terms of goal scoring chances.
Two minutes of additional time added at the Britannia Stadium.
The Stoke fans hold a minute's applause on the 42nd minute in memory of former player Paul Ware, who died recently at the age of 42.
Approaching half-time and nothing much to report in terms of goalscoring opportunities at either end.
Yellow CardPeter Crouch
We've had some very clumsy and unnecessary challenges so far and a couple of them could easily have resulted in red cards.
Yellow CardGrant Holt
Things are just getting a little heated as Grant Holt is the latest to go into the referee's notebook for a nasty tackle.
No ground has seen more goals from corners than the Britannia Stadium this season.
Walters gets to the knockdown on the left edge of the box and has players in support but instead shoots and gets it all wrong. Well over the bar.
Neither side look particularly fluid while Jon Walters seems to have run off that knock he picked up.
Yellow CardCameron Jerome
Snodgrass whips in a cross from the left and it deflects off Ryan Shotton which forces Begovic into snatching it before it sneaks over the line.
Cameron Jerome and Mark Bunn collide which results in both players requiring treatment before the Stoke striker is shown a yellow card for his part.
Kamara fires over from distance after Stoke clear the initial corner. We've had six corners already this afternoon.
Yellow CardSteven N'Zonzi
That challenge from N'Zonzi could have earned him a red card on another day, it was very late.
Stoke beginning to apply the pressure but Norwich hold firm. Steven N'Zonzi then gets booked for a reckless challenge on Kamara.
That was rather bizarre as N'zonzi appeared to move his arm towards the ball and hence prevent it from crossing the line.
First real sight of goal for the home side and inevitably it comes from a set-piece. Cameron Jerome hooks an effort goal wards from Adam's in-swinging corner but it hits his teammate N'zonzi.
Another aimless long ball from Ryan Shawcross sails harmlessly out for a goal-kick prompting a few groans from the passionate home supporters.
It's been a very quiet and scrappy opening quarter to this game with Stoke having plenty of the ball but Norwich have probably had the best two chances.
Stoke's top-scorer, Jon Walters, seems to have a problem and is struggling to move freely on the left flank. Tony Pulis won't want to lose the Irish international at this early stage.
Tony Pulis' side have seen plenty of the ball but have lacked quality in the final third and unusually they have wasted a couple of free-kicks from dangerous areas.
The Potters have managed to score just 12 times from open play this season, which is the worst in the division and set-pieces are looking the most likely source of a breakthrough at the minute for the hosts.
Steven Whittaker is lucky to escape an early booking after a hefty challenge on Adam. Whelan's set-piece is easily caught by Mark Bunn in the Canaries goal.
Another speculative effort from the visitors as Bradley Johnson tries his luck with a half-volley but it was never going to worry Asmir Begovic.
Norwich haven't seen much of the ball in the opening minutes but a diagonal ball finds Robert Snodgrass but he can't direct his header on target.
It's been a slow start to the game but Stoke have had the better of play thus far.
Stoke have managed only six wins at the Britannia Stadium this term and will be desperate to get off to a good start here this afternoon as Adam's free-kick sails over the bar from 30-yards out.
The home side start as they mean to go on by winning an early corner but Charlie Adam's delivery is poor. Norwich in their changed all black kit playing from right to left in this first period.
The players have emerged from the tunnel and are welcomed by a typically noisy crowd here at the Britannia Stadium. The pre-match handshakes are complete and Stoke will get us underway.
We're fast approaching kick-off and if you want to get in touch with your comments or predictions, then you can tweet me @RyanBailey37
Recent history suggests that today's game will be another tight affair, with four of the last six matches between the two teams ending with a 1-0 scoreline, with the others being a 1-1 draw and a 2-1 win for Stoke.
Tony Pulis names an unchanged side following his side's win at Loftus Road last time out, but Norwich boss Chris Hughton has chosen to ring the changes, Ryan Bennett starting in place of the injured Michael Turner, while Steven Whittaker and Alexander Tettey come in for Javier Garrido and Elliot Bennett.
Norwich: Bunn; Martin, Bassong, R.Bennett, Whittaker; Johnson, Howson, Tettey, Snodgrass, Kamara; Holt. Subs: Camp, Pilkington, Hoolahan, E.Bennett, Garrido, Becchio, Barnett.
Stoke: Begovic; Shotton, Shawcross, Huth, Wilkinson; Whelan, Nzonzi, Adam, Walters; Jerome, Crouch. Subs: Sorensen, Cameron, Jones, Owen, Whitehead, Kightly, Etherington.
Chris Hughton’s men will be buoyed by their crucial victory over Reading but defeat today would have them looking nervously over their shoulder once again.
Both of these sides have become accustomed to life in the Premier League in recent seasons, but the threat of relegation remains a large prospect as the fight for survival goes down to the wire. After ending a dire run of results at QPR last week, Stoke can pull clear of the drop-zone and hit the magical 40-point mark with victory today.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's live coverage of Stoke v Norwich City at the Britannia Stadium. I'm Ryan Bailey and I'll be guiding you through all the action as both sides look to ease any lingering relegation fears in what will be a crucial clash in the battle against the drop.
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