Norwich City U21s 2 Manchester United U21s 0

Kyle Lafferty scores the opening goal to put Norwich City Under-21s 1-0 up against Manchester United Under-21s. Picture: Jason Dawson/Jasonpix

Kyle Lafferty scores the opening goal to put Norwich City Under-21s 1-0 up against Manchester United Under-21s. Picture: Jason Dawson/Jasonpix

JASON DAWSON ©Jason Dawson

Kyle Lafferty provided a spectacular reminder of his ability to Norwich City boss Alex Neil this evening, helping the club’s under-21s beat Manchester United 2-0.

Second-half goals from Lafferty and Jamar Loza were enough for the young Canaries to end a six-game losing streak and to move off the foot of the Barclays U21 Premier League table.

The big news for the Canaries ahead of kick-off was the presence of Lafferty, Graham Dorrans and Steven Whittaker in the starting line-up, with all three finding first-team chances limited recently.

All eyes were particularly on Lafferty after his goal-scoring success propelled Northern Ireland to qualification for next summer’s European Championships.

The 28-year-old former Rangers striker had little chance to impress in a turgid first half in freezing conditions at Carrow Road though.

Playing as a lone front-man, Lafferty spent much of his time chasing the ball as the United youngsters retained possession well.

Some scrappy moments from both Dorrans and Whittaker were less than encouraging as the Canaries struggled to get a foothold – and they could have gone behind if Declan Rudd had not been alert.

The keeper dived to his left to keep out a powerful low shot from Josh Harrop in the 34th minute and then, from the resulting corner, spread himself to block a bouncing shot from centre-back Axel Tuanzebe.

The half then finished in aggressive fashion, with an innocuous swipe from Nick Powell towards City full-back Reece Hall-Johnson prompting an angry response from Conor McGrandles.

Matters were calmed before Harrop was booked for slamming into a tackle on Cameron King, leaving the Canaries attacker limping, as the half finished with the score still at 0-0, in front of over 5,000 spectators.

The moment City supporters had hoped for arrived soon after the break though, as Lafferty grabbed the goal he needed, in brilliant style.

It came after Dorrans – booked early in the half for arguing with the referee after a clear foul – curled a wonderful pass into the striker’s path from the centre circle.

Lafferty did the rest, stretching a long left leg out to reach a bouncing ball and smash his shot over goalkeeper Sam Johnstone and into the top-right corner in the 57th minute.

The goal-scorer was withdrawn in the 69th minute, in what looked to be a precaution, after twisting awkwardly. The striker got to his feet holding his groin but was moving freely before being replaced by trialist Arinse Uade.

The former Arsenal player, currently at Ilkeston Town, went to left-back as he looked to impress the City coaches – including Neil’s assistant manager Frankie McAvoy, who was alongside Dmitri Halejko in the home dugout.

Loza was denied by the feet of Johnstone in the 69th minute but then put the Canaries in control six minutes later, with another good finish.

The Jamaica international seized on loose play by the United defence and fired low into the bottom-right corner with his left foot, to wrap up the win.

Norwich U21s: Norwich City U21s: Rudd; Whittaker, Crowe, Efete, Hall-Johnson (C – Middleton 81); McGrandles, Dorrans; Eaton-Collins (Lewis 88), King, Loza; Lafferty (Uade 69). Unused subs: Killip (GK), Grant.

Man Utd U21s: Johnstone; Varela, Tuanzebe, Borthwick-Jackson, Riley; Redmond, Goss; Weir, Powell (Rashford 69), Harrop; Fletcher (Willock 69). Unused subs: O’Hara (GK), Rathbone, Willock.

Referee: Mr J Barreiro

Attendance: 5,194

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  • Totally agree with you Mylenium,he should be given the chance I've been saying that for weeks,also Reg breeze has a very good point,whatever anyone's views are on Hooper he is the only natural goal scorer we have and given enough game time he would prove that , he's scored goals at all levels and given a chance he will for us,but he can't he's on loan!,getting prem league match time playing in the championship!!! Anyway 3pts Saturday 2.0 city

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    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • …..The one person I had feelings for last night, was Dave Freezer! He had been sent out with a frozen moderator to do what Mike B does with the company of close friends, and tried to show enthusiasm about the game!….I felt I had to offer him the opportunity to feel he was talking to someone..anyone!...and we passed some moments in Q & A format with opinions thrown in to swell the content!...ARCHANT let him down wholesale, as per usual, and he had to do all the office work himself!….Never mind he did have an opportunity to sing the praises of Lafferty, Losa, and Rudd!...I asked if he could see any of the management present, but he said “If there were... they were all wrapped up Christmas style with woollen hats to cover their identity! ….. Funny thing happened though….My name was 'hacked', and an intrusive comment was made under my name!…..

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    Stew Pydsodd

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • I think and hope he meant despair not disappear. Always good to hear from optimists:-)

    Report this comment

    el dingo

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • 【ツ】Don't disappear fine city, we'll miss you !【ツ】

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    Ole Tommy Buster Custard

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • It is obvious we do not have anything like enough to offer up front. As in central defence we lack pace and guile. It seems we have little to lose in giving Lafferty a game and on that score what about Loza? AN obviously tried to inject pace by using Redmond down the middle but that did not work. So what have we to lose in making a significant change up front? However, whoever plays there needs better service. We have been seeing too many long high balls played up to Jerome and Mbokani which has proved a poor tactic as they have been totally isolated.

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    malaga flier

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • Please don't disappear, Fine City, I think you are despairing at the negative attitude towards the bigger teams. But I think Surrey is only stating the obvious, "We won't get many chances in that match..." I agree about confidence and all sportsmen, especially out-of-form strikers snatching at a half chance instead of coolly slotting home. But Mbokani has shown that coolness, and Hooper almost always does. I believe Lafferty deserves to be on the bench and eventually get some game time, but to start him ignores the other strengths that Mbokani and, especially Jerome, bring to the role.

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    Reg Breeze

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • Bless you Surrey Canary, unfortunately you are longstanding inherent problem for our club in being so defeatist. If you think you will lose, you probably will. Chelski were on a terrible run and The Gooners have just lost to WBA. I disappear at such an awful attitude.

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    A fine city

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015

  • Probably right to give him a start - why not against the Gunners? We won't get many chances in that match so maybe, if he is more likely to take a chance than the other strikers. It's not a must win game, a bonus if we get something from it. And it would be a test for him up against top class opposition for AN to assess... The more I wrote this, the more I think he's worth a shout for Saturday.

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    Surrey Canary

    Monday, November 23, 2015

  • Lafferty must be given a start. He is the only striker we have that is consistently scoring goals. His confidence is high, he's at the top of his form and he can no longer be ignored by AN. On current form he looks a much bigger threat than Jerome, Mbokani & Grabban. You can quastion the opposition he's been playing against but the simple fact is that strikers who are on form will score against anyone. We are weak upfront & we need a regular goalscorer - time to give Lafferty a chance.

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    Monday, November 23, 2015

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