Paddy's Pointers: Five observations from Norwich City's 1-1 Championship draw at Derby County
PUBLISHED: 23:59 10 February 2018 | UPDATED: 11:52 11 February 2018
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Our Norwich City correspondent Paddy Davitt delivers his verdict from Pride Park
1. Reffing hell - Mr Simpson did little to endear himself to the Canaries.
First he decided Scott Carson’s clumsy levering of James Maddison to the ground in his own box warranted a corner rather than a penalty.
Thankfully, his assistant proved more observant and Simpson was prepared to defer.
Nelson Oliveira’s tame spot kick was gathered by Carson. But then when Oliveira was wiped out in the second period, Simpson could not get the whistle into his mouth quick enough just as Moritz Leitner lashed the ball home from an acute angle.
Can you imagine the fallout if Maddison had not coolly slotted Norwich’s second spot kick?
And all that with arguably the clearest penalty shout of the day overlooked when Josh Murphy was thrown to the deck. Bizarre. Although Daneil Farke did reveal afterwards Simpson had apologised for blowing too quickly after Leitner’s slot. Quite.
2. Second helpings - Derby appeared to settle for a policy of containment in the second period.
Norwich were afforded more and more of the ball and with it edged towards Carson’s goal.
After a number of decent openings, City finally made the breakthrough. Twice, if you count Leitner’s slapped finish before Maddison applied the cool touch from the spot.
Behind to one of the oldest, streetwise squads in the division, on the longest current unbeaten run in the Championship and bang in the race for automatic promotion, take this as a statement of intent in terms of the bigger picture at Carrow Road.
3. Oh no, Nelson - Oliveira is now zero from 10 in his ever-deepening goal drought.
The first half penalty saved by Carson was the strike of a man bereft of confidence.
That came after an earlier chance, when he shrugged off Curtis Davies but fired straight at the Rams’ stopper.
Give him his due, his sharp pivot inside the box earned the second penalty and there was no shortage of effort or endeavour. He just desperately needs a goal to embellish the workrate.
Dennis Srbeny made his debut late on and this is now a conundrum Farke must wrestle with.
Play him to get the confidence or dip him out of the starting XI for some respite.
4. Alex Tettey. Precious cargo - Tettey went down in a heap after a heavy first half challenge with Richard Keogh and that brought home how important it is to keep the Norwegian fit for the remainder of the season.
Particularly with Tom Trybull now facing a lengthy spell out.
Leitner is a technician, not a warrior.
There is only one of those at Farke’s disposal in that key central battleground. Whatever happens beyond the summer, he is vital right now.
5. Derby delight - From Derby to derby. Another positive away game, another notch in a consistent seam of form.
And the small matter of an East Anglian derby to look forward to at Carrow Road.
Ipswich laboured to a goalless draw at Burton that leaves both neighbours locked on the same points and inhabiting the same part of the Championship.
There might only be pride at stake next Sunday but that is plenty enough motivation.
That and the maintenance of Norwich’s derby dominance.
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