English Premiership

Stoke salvage draw at Norwich

2011-08-21 16:50
Kenwyne Jones (File)

Norwich - Stoke City striker Kenwyne Jones hit a stoppage-time equaliser to rescue a 1-1 draw against 10-man Norwich City at Carrow Road on Sunday.

Paul Lambert's newly-promoted team were on course for victory in their first home top-flight match since 2005 when on-loan Manchester United defender Ritchie de Laet scored just before halftime.

But although Jon Walters missed a penalty for Stoke after Norwich defender Leon Barnett was sent off in the second half, the FA Cup finalists levelled thanks to Jones' header in the closing moments.

Stoke had been in action in the Europa League on Thursday and they made a slow start as the hosts looked to build on last weekend's draw at Wigan.

Anthony Pilkington - one of half a dozen changes by Lambert from that Wigan match -- saw his powerful effort deflected away to safety early on and he threatened again moments later.

Grant Holt nodded Kyle Naughton's sweeping crossfield ball to the far post back into the path of Pilkington, and only a brave block from Robert Huth stopped the winger from firing Norwich ahead.

Stoke countered quickly after 28 minutes, working the ball out to Matthew Etherington on the left, who cut inside Barnett and fired an angled drive which John Ruddy beat away.

Norwich took the lead in the 37th minute when former Stoke defender De Laet glanced Bradley Johnson's curling cross into the far corner.

Stoke were rattled, with Jonathan Woodgate almost diverting a low cross into his own net which Asmir Begovic pushed around the post.

Chris Martin - making a first appearance since February - nearly doubled Norwich's lead in the second half when his 20-yard drive was pushed away by Begovic.

But Tony Pulis's side were finding their rhythm now and Etherington's free-kick forced Ruddy into a fine save.

Stoke were awarded a penalty in the 63rd minute when Walters got ahead of Barnett and then tumbled in the area.

Referee Neil Swarbrick ruled that Barnett was the last man and showed him the red card, but Ruddy kept Norwich in the match as he turned away Walters' penalty.

When Jones blasted over from close range, it looked like Stoke's last chance had gone but the visitors' pressure finally told in the third minute of added time as Jones headed in Glenn Whelan's cross.

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