News24

Holt the hero for Norwich

2011-11-26 19:58

Norwich - Club captain Grant Holt scored the winner within minutes of coming off the bench as Norwich City beat Queens Park Rangers 2-1 at Carrow Road on Saturday.

The striker was thown on with 20 minutes to go in a double substitution along with Wes Hoolahan and Canaries manager Paul Lambert's move paid off three minutes later, with the midfielder setting up Holt to score.

The hosts took the lead in the 15th minute after a sustained spell of pressure when Scotland right-back Russell Martin reacted first in a goalmouth scramble.

QPR equalised in the 59th minute through ex-England international Luke Young, the right-back burying a chance that rebounded off the post.

The result meant the Canaries leapfrogged the Hoops to sit ninth in the English Premier League table on 16 points, two places ahead of QPR on 15.

Lambert made three changes for the game, while QPR had Radek Cerny in goal due to injuries to Paddy Kenny and his understudy, Brian Murphy. Shaun Derry replaced suspended captain Joey Barton in midfield.

The match between last season's Championship top two -- QPR winning the trophy -- was the pair's first top-flight clash since 1995.

Cerny, 37, the former Czech Republic goalkeeper, was forced into action early, keeping out shots from Simeon Jackson and Steve Morison.

Martin goal's was no surprise as the Norfolk side piled on the pressure, with the captain on the day getting the decisive touch in a melee following a corner.

The Canaries were lucky not to give away a penalty within minutes, however.

Shaun Wright-Phillips drifted into the penalty box and fell over the outstretched arms of goalkeeper John Ruddy, but referee Mark Clattenburg dismissed calls for a spot-kick.

QPR finally got going towards the end of the first half, when Wright-Phillips forced Ruddy into a save.

Hoops boss Neil Warnock replaced defender Clint Hill with striker Jay Bothroyd in the 57th minute as the west London side sought an equaliser.

The attack-minded approach paid off quickly as an impressive shot from Jamie Mackie struck the foot of a post and fell straight into the path of Young, who slid in to bury the chance from a narrow angle.

Young had scored twice in two years but this was his second goal in two matches, while Norwich have not kept a clean sheet in all of their 14 matches this season.

QPR were looking the better side and Lambert responded by bringing on Hoolahan and Grant.

Holt was soon in the action, seeing a header blocked on the line by Young, and he converted Hoolahan's cross in the 73rd minute to delight home fans in the 26 781-strong crowd.

Young nearly got a second equaliser, clipping the crossbar, but it was not to be for the Hoops.

AFP