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Played
December 29, 2012 10:00 AM EST
Carrow Road — Norwich, Norfolk
Referee:‬ M. Jones‎
Attendance:‬ 26827‎
 
Top of the Match
Edin Dzeko
Edin Dzeko
Manchester City
Edin Dzeko
Edin Dzeko
Manchester City
Flop of the Match
Samir Nasri
Samir Nasri
Manchester City
Samir Nasri
Samir Nasri
Manchester City

Norwich City 3-4 Manchester City: Dzeko double enough for champions in end-of-year cracker

Roberto Mancini's side picked up three points despite making the match a lot tougher than it needed to be, with Samir Nasri receiving a straight red card

By Ryan Benson

Manchester City ended 2012 with three points after beating Norwich City 4-3 at Carrow Road in a fantastically entertaining encounter.

City raced into a two-goal lead thanks to two early Edin Dzeko strikes, but Anthony Pilkington pulled one back before Sergio Aguero got the Blues’ third before halftime.

Samir Nasri received a straight red card and Russell Martin got Norwich’s second, and later got a second of his own after Mark Bunn put the ball into his own goal and ensured that City got the three points.

Roberto Mancini was understandably annoyed with his side’s performance against Sunderland, with four players suffering in particular. Kolo Toure James Milner, Javi Garcia and Carlos Tevez were all dropped to the bench as Gael Clichy, Gareth Barry, Samir Nasri and Edin Dzeko replaced them.

Last season, Norwich lost 5-1 and 6-1 at the hands of Mancini’s side and from the first five minutes it looked like it would be a similar scoreline. In just the second minute Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko combined well down the right before floating the ball over to the left for David Silva, who in turn cushioned it into the area and the Bosnian fired it past Mark Bunn for the opener.

Norwich looked a bit stunned and was even further behind after the visitors’ very next attack. Vincent Kompany powered through the middle, riding a challenge from Bradley Johnson before picking out Aguero, who took his time and picked out Dzeko, who doubled his tally.

After Mancini’s side’s impressive start, the match threatened to calm down, but Norwich had other ideas. Robert Snodgrass’ mazy run resulted in a controversial free kick on the edge of the area, and thanks to a deflection from the wall, Anthony Pilkington’s low effort beat Joe Hart.

Despite the Norwich goal, the champions continued to dominate and almost got a third through Yaya Toure before things turned sour right at the end of the first period. Samir Nasri reacted angrily to a strong challenge from Sebastien Bassong and received a straight red card after going nose to nose with the Cameroonian.

After halftime, City soon had its third of the day thanks to Sergio Aguero. Toure played a great pass over the Norwich defense, but Bassong failed to deal with it and the Argentine forward delightfully lofted it over Bunn and into the net.

It did not take long for Norwich to hit back, however, and the Canaries did so through a well-worked corner. After the corner was taken short, Robert Snodgrass produced an excellent cross that Bassong headed back across goal for Martin to head into the top corner.

In keeping with the match, City soon restored the two-goal cushion. Another long ball was played over the Norwich defense and after bringing it down with his chest, Dzeko fired the ball on to the post, and it bounced back on to Bunn and went over the line.

The match wasn't getting any less ridiculous and Norwich grabbed a third with just over 15 minutes to go. Joe Hart failed to collect a Norwich corner and after an ensuing melee, Martin knocked the ball in for his second goal of the match.

Both sides pressed in the final minutes as Aguero had two very good efforts saved by Bunn, but the champions managed to hold on for the three points.

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Norwich City

13
Mark Bunn
Goalkeeper
67′
2.00
2
Russell Martin
Defender
63′ 75′
3.50
5
S. Bassong
Defender
44′ 63′
2.50
6
Michael Turner
Defender
1.50
18
Javier Garrido
Defender
2.00
4
Bradley Johnson
Midfielder
51′ 75′
2.00
7
Robert Snodgrass
Midfielder
3.50
12
Anthony Pilkington
Midfielder
15′ 84′
3.00
14
Wesley Hoolahan
Midfielder
74′
2.50
27
Alexander Tettey
Midfielder
57′
2.00
20
Steve Morison
Striker
45′
2.00

Manchester City

2.00
1
Joe Hart
Goalkeeper
3.50
4
3.00
5
3.00
22
Gael Clichy
Defender
18′
3.00
33
1.50
8
Samir Nasri
Midfielder
44′
2.50
18
Gareth Barry
Midfielder
4.00
21
David Silva
Midfielder
2′ 57′
4.00
42
Yaya Touré
Midfielder
4.50
10
Edin Dzeko
Striker
2′ 4′ 82′
4.00
16

Substitutes

13
Declan Rudd
Goalkeeper
 - 
20
 - 
24
 - 
8
Jonny Howson
Midfielder
57′
3.50
17
 - 
37
Harry Kane
Striker
45′
 - 
10
K. Jackson
Striker
74′
2.00

Substitutes

 - 
30
 - 
6
 - 
4
Kolo Toure
Defender
2.50
7
James Milner
Midfielder
57′
 - 
14
Javi García
Midfielder
93′
 - 
21
Scott Sinclair
Midfielder
 - 
10

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 - 
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Man City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man United
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Man City
15 0