Norwich City 1, Doncaster Rovers 1

Norwich City let two valuable Championship points slip away when an own goal by Adam Drury gave injury-hit Doncaster a share of the spoils at Carrow Road.

Drury glanced a corner from John Oster into his own net seven minutes from time just as it seemed the promotion-chasing Canaries were poised to secure another vital victory.

Skipper Grant Holt's 15th goal of the season had given Paul Lambert's men a 31st-minute lead and he might have made it 2-0 just before half-time when he fired over the top.

City were not at their best but had enough chances in the second half to have made the game safe, with Aaron Wilbraham and Andrew Crofts missing the best openings.

Doncaster had begun brightly but threatened less after the interval, until they were presented with a gift equaliser.


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City were unchanged from the 2-2 draw at Leeds, but there were changes on the bench.

Matt Gill replaced Anthony McNamee as one of the midfield options, while new loan defender Rob Edwards, signed from Blackpool, brought the number of substitutes back up to seven.

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Despite injury problems reported to have affected 14 players and prompting them to try to get the fixture postponed, Doncaster managed to field a full eleven players plus seven substitutes.

Doncaster began brightly and forced a couple of free-kicks, Drury getting a word from the official for a foul on Moussa. Ruddy did well to come out and claim the second dead-ball kick from Mills.

It took City until the ninth minute to manage a shot at goal but Wilbraham's half-hit effort was no problem for 'keeper Sullivan.

A shot on the turn from Wilson brought Ruddy into action as Doncaster pressed again.

Oster's through-ball then presented Moussa with an opening and as he wriggled into shooting range, it took a timely challenge from Ward to deflect his shot over the top for a corner.

It was clear after the first quarter of an hour that Holt was struggling with a knock, but he decided to try to run it off rather than seek treatment.

As Doncaster continued to look sprightly, Ward made another important block from a cross by Moussa.

A free-kick by the left corner flag gave City an opportunity, but Fox's kick was a poor one and as Doncaster broke quickly, Hoolahan was booked for tugging at Moussa's shirt.

With just over half an hour played, City's first decent attempt of the night brought the opening goal, Holt's 15th of the season.

It was the simplest of goals as Drury sent over a cross from wide on the left touchline and Holt arrived at the far post to meet it with a sidefoot volley into the roof of the net.

A cross from Hoolahan caused some unease in the Doncaster defence but Lansbury fouled Hird as he challenged for the centre.

One minute before the break, Holt could have made it 2-0 but fired over from another Drury cross after a clever touch from Lansbury.

• HALF-TIME: Norwich City 1, Doncaster Rovers 0

There were penalty appeals four minutes after the break when Russell Martin's cross from the right was met by Lansbury, whose shot was deflected off Hird for a corner, but though City were shouting for handball, it appeared to strike the defender just under the armpit.

A fine through-ball from Whitbread set up a good chance for Wilbraham, but as he cut inside on to his right foot, he delayed too long and curled his effort wide.

There was a scare for City when Euell's flick put Moussa clear and his low drive was saved by Ruddy.

Then Mills weaved his way into the City area superbly before being halted by a challenge from Ward.

Ward was booked 10 minutes into the half for chopping down Moussa on the edge of the Norwich area, but Oster fired the free-kick straight into the wall.

Holt volleyed over from a Lansbury cross after 58 minutes as City stepped up the search for a second goal.

Doncaster made their first change on the hour when Shiels replaced skipper Stock.

Wilbraham could have scored his first goal for City when Russell Martin's excellent cross presented him with a header in the six-yard box but he directed it straight at Sullivan and the 'keeper parried it.

There was another chance when Wilbraham met Fox's free-kick with a far-post header but Holt was just unable to knock it home as it bounced across goal.

Crofts missed a golden opportunity when Holt's cross presented him with a shot from 10 yards out but he sliced a left-foot effort wide.

Whitbread needed treatment after getting a boot in the face from Euell on halfway and it was a while before he got to his feet.

With just over 20 minutes left, Lambert made his first change by replacing Fox with Surman.

Surman had a shot blocked by Thomas as he was involved for the first time, and at the other end, Oster fired a long-range effort over the top.

A cross by Lansbury provided another opening but Hoolahan and Holt went for the same ball and the chance was squandered.

With 10 minutes left, Lansbury made way for Korey Smith in City's second change.

There were seven minutes left when City presented Doncaster with a surprise equaliser – an own goal.

Oster took a corner from the left side and Drury glanced a header past his own 'keeper.

Wilbraham had a header blocked as City hit back, but Doncaster broke quickly and Ruddy made an important save from Euell as he got on the end of a cross from Oster.

Whitbread had a header blocked at close range by Keegan as Norwich threw everything forward in search of a winner.

With two minutes left, Jackson replaced Hoolahan, and then Souza was sent on for Doncaster in place of Moussa.

• RESULT: Norwich City 1, Doncaster Rovers 1

• Norwich City: Ruddy; Russell Martin, Ward, Whitbread, Drury; Fox; Crofts, Lansbury; Hoolahan; Wilbraham, Holt.

Subs: Steer, Edwards, Tierney, Gill, Korey Smith (for Lansbury, 80), Surman (for Fox, 70), Jackson (for Hoolahan, 88).

• Doncaster Rovers: Sullivan; Mills, Hird, Thomas, Friend; Moussa, Wilson, Keegan, Oster; Stock; Euell.

Subs: Woods, Webster, Kilgallon, Souza (for Moussa, 90), Grayson, Shiels (for Stock, 60), Husband.

• Referee: Russell Booth (Nottinghamshire)

• Attendance: 25,529

• Goals: City: Holt (31). Doncaster: Drury (own goal, 83)

• Bookings: City: Hoolahan (26), Ward (55)

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