David Freezer: Norwich City player ratings after 1-0 Championship home win over Wigan

David Freezer: Norwich City player ratings after 1-0 Championship home win over Wigan

Wigan Athletic boss fuming after penalty levelling up

Teemu Pukki of Norwich is through on goal but is fouled by Cheyenne Dunkley of Wigan Athletic but no free kick is awarded by Referee Gavin Ward during the Sky Bet Championship match at Carrow Road, Norwich Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

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Norwich fans rave about Marco Stiepermanns latest display

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There are many reasons for this upturn in form but Daniel Farke’s decision to pair Moritz Leitner and Alex Tettey together in midfield has been instrumental in that. The emergence of Max Aarons and Todd Cantwell, along with the excellent Marco Stiepermann being played in his favoured position have all helped too and you can’t overlook Teemu Pukki either, obviously.

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I’m beginning to think that we might now be watching a good Norwich City team, although I am very conscious that all of those five wins have only been by a single goal. That does concern me but should City make the playoffs come next May, no-one will look back and say “Yeah but they only beat ‘Boro, Reading, QPR and Wigan by the odd goal.”

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Stiepermann wasn’t quite as close to the dugout as Tettey but he was still far enough away from the goal to arguably not be in a position to respond easily if the spot-kick was saved, deflected or cleared away. I know it’s all a bit tense but lads, it’s not the Champions League Final, it’s Wigan.

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I also noted that of the City players, only Teemu Pukki was in any sort of position to respond to a rebound type save. Fortunately, Vrancic is as cool as they come but if I was Daniel Farke I would be making sure that doesn’t happen again in the future come Sunday morning’s debrief.

Latics went down 1-0 at Carrow Road thanks to an 84th-minute spot-kick from Mario Vrancic, after substitute Callum Connolly was adjudged to have fouled Teemu Pukki in the box.

It wasn’t unfair on Wigan though, I was sitting in the River End and it was a bone fide penalty. For just a moment though, I worried he wouldn’t give it but Mr Ward made a really big thing of running to the penalty spot and pointing. Talk about hamming it up but I’ll take it.

Cook felt referee Gavin Wards controversial decision was affected by his refusal to award the home side a spot-kick midway through the first half for a clear foul on Pukki by Chey Dunkley – which the Latics boss agreed was a stonewall penalty.

He let numerous trips, pushes and flailing arms go unpunished time and again. Wigan were physical and sometimes far from subtle with it. They constantly committed little fouls, like pushes in the back for example that Mr Ward and his assistants either didn’t see or chose to ignore.

Its a difficult emotion at the moment, because I always try and give an honest assessment of a game, said the Latics boss.

I did think their penalty in the first half was a penalty, youve got to be truthful about these things.

But once he hasnt given that, we always possibly the next opportunity he got, he would genuinely give Norwich a penalty.

Cook had words with Ward after the game as the players left the field, but wasnt prepared to divulge what was said.

I just feel the game was petering out to a 0-0, both teams cancelled each other out, and I think a draw would have been a fair result.

Were disappointed because over the 90 minutes we got into positions and possibly should have created more from them.

We tried to be aggressive with our shape, we tried to press them high up the pitch, and a lot of what we did was very good.

Norwich at web:


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