Norwich City meekly slipped out of the Capital One Cup against League Two underdogs Shrewsbury on a miserable night in Shropshire.Shrewsbury Town Vs Norwich City highlights.
James Collins’ glanced home a 56th minute header after City had switched off from a set piece and the visitors only sporadically threatened an equaliser; captain Steven Whittaker going close with an angled late strike on a dire outing at the Greenhous Meadow.
Whittaker, along with Declan Rudd, Elliott Bennett and Carlos Cuellar were the only survivors from the previous round’s win over Crawley. Carlos Cuellar partnered Spanish compatriot Ignasi Miquel in the young centre back’s full competitive debut since his deadline day move from Arsenal.
Vadis Odjidja was another full debutant for the Canaries, with Gary Hooper and Jonny Howson making their seasonal reappearances in the first team after pre-season injuries.
Kyle Lafferty was deployed alongside Hooper in his first outing down the middle with the likes of Cameron Jerome, Lewis Grabban and Nathan Grabban given the night off.
Scottish youth international Conor McGrandles were included on the substitutes’ bench alongside academy products Cameron King, Kyle McFadden and Harry Toffolo.
Odjidja slotted into a right midfield role in the opening seconds with Elliott Bennett on the opposite flank in. Lafferty appeared momentarily interested in Howson’s raking crossfield ball but Jermaine Grandison was around on the cover.
Javier Garrido took emergency action to clear Mickey Demetriou’s deep cross, which gave the League Two underdogs a chance to probe for any weakness from set pieces, but Lafferty cleared his lines at Norwich’s near post.
Shrews’ skipper Liam Lawrence tried a speculative long range strike that flew into the away supported stationed behind Declan Rudd.
City spurned the first real chance of the tie in the ninth minute when Lafferty was left unattended but headed Bennett’s inswinging cross over from barely six yards with only Town keeper Jayson Leutwiler to beat.
Shrewsbury’s commitment to possession football was commendable but Cuellar and Miquel were up to the challenge whenever the ball was delivered within the vicinity of Rudd’s goal in the opening quarter.
Norwich’s high pressing pleased Adams patrolling at the front of his technical area as Lafferty and Hooper set the tone from the front.
Gary O’Neil’s first time strike cannoned against Connor Goldson in the 20th minute but neither side were carrying enough attacking thrust.
Lafferty was again a central figure in City’s next real incursion, but his miscued header from Garrido’s centre slipped well wide.
Odjidja clipped James Collins on a rare counter from Shrewsbury which forced Miquel to head behind only for the gathering threat to fizzle out.
Norwich appeared content to patiently ease their way to the edge of the Shrews’ penalty box as the first half elapsed and work Garrido and Whittaker into wide positions.
Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro drifted away from Miquel in a threatening foray at the other end but drilled a low left-footed effort wide from 25 yards with the hosts growing in confidence.
Captain Whittaker whipped in a cross sliced behind from Goldson, with the City skipper urging his front men to react quicker. Miquel climbed above Collins from the resulting corner but headed over on the edge of the six yard box.
Howson was swamped in central midfield seconds later with the dangerous Akpa Akpro racing down the right channel to collect a throughball and hammer at Rudd from 20 yards.Follow @Football7x24