Murphy’s hat-trick helps Norwich City sink Dereham
Norwich's fit-again central defensive duo Zak Whitbread and Dani Ayala played the full 90 minutes last night as City knocked holders Dereham out of the Norfolk Senior Cup with the help of a hat-trick from Josh Murphy.
Dereham 1, Norwich City 5
Norwich's fit-again central defensive duo Zak Whitbread and Dani Ayala played the full 90 minutes last night as City knocked holders Dereham out of the Norfolk Senior Cup.
Both senior stars came through a routine work out for Ricky Martin's side as the Canaries eased into the fourth round, courtesy of a hat-trick from Josh Murphy along with goals from Reece Hall-Johnson and Matt Ball. Magpies' forward Billy Smith bravely grabbed a second half consolation after beating Jed Steer to a through ball, but Dereham boss Matty Henman was disappointed at the manner of his side's exit.
'We didn't look like the holders at all tonight,' he said, 'You have to accept it to a certain degree because they are a very good team, they have full-time footballers, they are very fit, organised and they have good movement. That said, I just don't think we gave ourselves any chance in the game by our first half performance. We didn't stick together as a team, they had some great finishes but I didn't think we got round them or asked them any questions.
'Maybe we gave them too much respect. Equally, when we had the ball I don't know if were brave enough to go at them and go forward with the ball and maybe risk losing it at times. We played safe and allowed them to get behind the ball. I think we have players who can handle it and can play in that company but we just didn't impose ourselves on them.'
City chief Martin was delighted to progress after the Magpies shocked Norwich at Carrow Road in last season's semi-final stage.
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'We knew it would be a tough one but I am pleased we ran out 5-1 winners with a young side,' he said. 'That is why we are in the competition. To give our youngsters an opportunity to be put in an environment that is out of there comfort zone. It's a wet evening under floodlights with a hostile crowd against you and adult players. There was probably less experience in our side than last year. Some of the boys who did play here would have been too young. I thought some of the goals we scored were encouraging. Josh gets a hat-trick and he could have got a couple more. I felt the goal before half-time, the third one, was a big goal because it really made it an uphill battle for them. We're really pleased to be in this competition. Some of the really young ones are experiencing senior football for the first time. Adult football is totally different and, ultimately, if they want to progress from the academy they have to deal with that.'
Dereham: Marshall, Willis (Marsden 77), Cusack, Gusterson, Burt, Hastings (Downes 45), Howell, Borrer, Smith, Roberts, Pledger. Subs (not used): Thomson, Howard, Horton.
Bookings: Hastings, Willis
Goal: Smith (57)
Norwich: Steer, Francomb, Toffolo (Barker 66), Kelly (Clunan 57), Ayala, Whitbread, Hall-Johnson, Brindley, Loza, Ball, Murphy (Florence 83). Subs (not used): McKenzie, Matthews.
Goals: Hall-Johnson (16), Ball (20), Murphy (44, 51, 62)
Referee: Mr M McIntyre