Norwich frustrate Everton

2012-04-07 18:46

Norwich - Norwich striker Grant Holt bagged a second-half equaliser as Everton were forced to settle for a 2-2 draw at Carrow Road on Saturday.

Everton led twice through goals from Croatian striker Nikica Jelavic but Jonny Howson got Norwich's first equaliser before the break and Holt struck with 14 minutes to play to ensure the spoils were shared.

Holt's 13th Premier League goal of the season was just reward for a dynamic display from the forward, who remains the second-highest English goalscorer in the Premier League behind only Manchester United's Wayne Rooney.

The draw means that Norwich have now reached 40 points, while Everton remain in seventh place ahead of Liverpool going into next week's FA Cup semi-final showdown with their Merseyside rivals at Wembley.

It was a frustrating result for Everton, who dominated the early stages and went ahead in the 22nd minute.

Leighton Baines surged down the left and found Phil Jagielka, who crossed for Jelavic to flick home from close range.

Everton almost went 2-0 up moments later when Tony Hibbert's cross struck the woodwork but Tim Cahill failed to poke home the rebound.

Norwich have shown tremendous spirit throughout their first season back in the top-flight, however, and they levelled through Howson in the 39th minute.

Adam Drury released Wes Hoolahan down the left flank and he cut inside and squared to the midfielder Howson, who calmly slotted home from six yards.

Norwich threatened early in the second half when Tim Howard spilled Howson's fierce strike but Everton scrambled the ball clear before Holt could convert the rebound.

But the Canaries went behind again in controversial circumstances in the 61st minute.

When Steven Pienaar went down under a challenge and held the ball between his legs, Norwich stopped to appeal for obstruction.

But Andre Marriner waved play on and Marouane Fellaini passed to Baines, who laid off to Pienaar and his cross was converted by Jelavic from close range.

The Canaries players were incensed Marriner had not given a foul against Pienaar.

Norwich poured forward in search of the equaliser that would east their sense of injustice and it arrived in the 76th minute.

Howard spilled Aaron Wilbraham's shot straight back into his path and the striker held off four Everton players to square to Holt, who calmly swept home.