Norwich 2 Sunderland 0

Published:
by Stuart Vose

No joy for Black Cats at Carrow Road.

Norwich saw off Sunderland thanks to two first-half goals at Carrow Road as Gus Poyet's side suffered a disappointing away defeat.

Robert Snodgrass capitalised on a busy start for the hosts when he fired City into the lead after 20 minutes.

Alex Tettey's powerful volley doubled the advantage just after the half-hour as Norwich moved clear of the relegation zone.

Sunderland struggled to recover following Snodgrass's opener and came closest in the early stages of the second half when Wes Brown's header was well saved by John Ruddy. 

But there was no way back for the visitors, with Snodgrass coming close to a third goal before Marcos Alonso was sent off late on for a second bookable offence.

With Steven Fletcher ruled out after picking up an injury against Crystal Palace, Jozy Altidore came in up front for the trip to Carrow Road, while Jack Colback replaced Seb Larsson.

Norwich, meanwhile, made five changes to the side which lost at Southampton and boss Chris Hughton saw his side start brightly, with Vito Mannone called into action to save Jonny Howson's blast from the edge of the box.

And they turned their early posssession into a breakthrough on the 20-minute mark when Brown's attempted clearance found Johan Elmander, who teed up Snodgrass to curl the ball into the corner from 12 yards.

The busy Howson twice came close as Norwich continued to press, with Mannone beating out another powerful effort before an ambitious 45-yard lob dropped wide.

Mannone could do nothing about City's second goal just after the half-hour, with John O'Shea clearing a cross as far as Tettey, who smashed a searing 25-yard volley into the corner of the net.

Poyet had seen enough and responded with a double substitution, withdrawing Ki and Colback in place of Lee Cattermole and Larsson.

Fabio Borini saw a shot held by Ruddy as City went in 2-0 up at the break, while the hosts would have doubled their lead soon after the restart had Mannone not done brilliantly to turn Ricky van Wolfswinkel's header over the crossbar.

The visitors created their best chance of the game six minutes into the second period when Brown met Adam Johnson's cross six yards out, but Ruddy spread himself almost on the goal-line to block the defender's header.

That was as close as Sunderland came, with Mannone forced to deny Wes Hoolahan at the other end, claiming the midfielder's low shot down by the near post just after Nacho Scocco had replaced Johnson.

Meanwhile, City were inches away in the closing stages as Snodgrass's well-struck free-kick flashed inches over Mannone's crossbar.

Altidore saw a shot blocked late on but there was no comeback in the offing for the Black Cats, who saw Alonso dismissed in injury time, meaning he will now miss the trip to Liverpool.

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Team Sheet

Ruddy
1
Martin
2
Yobo
26
Bassong
5
Olsson
23
Yellow Howson
8
Yellow Snodgrass
7
Tettey
27
Hoolahan (Redmond)
14
van Wolfswinkel (Hooper)
9
Elmander (Johnson)
16
Mannone
25
Alonso Yellow Red
28
Bardsley Yellow
2
Brown
5
O'Shea
16
Bridcutt Yellow
26
Johnson (Scocco)
11
Borini
31
Colback (Larsson) Yellow
14
Ki (Cattermole)
4
Altidore
17

Substitutes

Johnson
4
GutiƩrrez
15
Becchio
19
Redmond
22
Bunn
13
Hooper
11
Whittaker
3
Celustka
12
Giaccherini
23
Vergini
27
Larsson
7
Ustari
32
Cattermole Yellow
33
Scocco
30