Young Canaries seal another thrilling FA Youth Cup comeback to beat Newcastle 4-3 and earn home quarter-final
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Yet another Carrow Road thriller has sent Norwich City Under-18s through to the FA Youth Cup quarter-finals for the third time in six seasons.
Alfie Payne and Aaron Ekumah both made vital blocks for City before the visitors took the lead in the 25th minute, Kelland Watts heading home after his initial shot was parried by young keeper Dante Baptiste.
Strikers Adam Idah and Anthony Spyrou kept offering the Canaries hope and Newcastle defender Oisin McEntee made a heroic block from a Spyrou volley five minutes later, only for the Magpies score again in the 39th minute.
Alan Fleming gave away a free-kick on the left and City tried to hold a high line as Magpies skipper Sean Longstaff swung in the free-kick but striker Elias Sorensen got across to nod down and past Baptiste for 2-0.
It was looking bleak for David Wright's side but Spyrou gave the hosts hope in the final minute of the half, in strange style.
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Isak Thorvaldsson's fine pass into the right channel allowed Spyrou to charge at goal and lash a shot which keeper Daniel Langley could only parry up on to his bar and then desperately swipe the ball away from his line as it spun goalwards – with everyone holding their breath until the linesman gave the goal.
It was perfectly timed and City came out for the second half fired up, equalising in the 70th minute as Timi Odusina leapt high to head home captain Payne's corner.
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The Canaries had come from behind to progress in both the previous rounds and did it again, Newcastle hitting the post with a Thomas Allan header after a corner but the hosts streaking away and Fleming going through one-on-one and chipping the keeper from close range – to spark wild celebrations.
They proved premature though, as Adam Wilson lashed in a low shot from 15 yards in the third minute of injury-time to take the game into extra-time, before yet another twist in the tale.
Idah – who had lost the ball in the lead up to Newcastle's equaliser – countered and forced Langley to save with his feet, only for Spyrou to follow up and lash home from 10 yards and settle an entertaining seven-goal thriller.
Bury or Birmingham now await in the quarter-finals, with the tie again set to be played at Carrow Road.
Norwich (4-2-3-1): Baptiste; Aarons, Odusina, Ekumah, Kamal; Payne (C), Thorvaldsson; Thompson-Brissett (Barnes 65), Spyrou, Fleming (Barkarson 116); Idah. Unused subs: Hutchinson, Mehmeti, Tanimowo
Goals: Spyrou (45, 101), Odusina (70), Fleming (81)
Booked: Thorvalddson (foul on McEntee, 48)
Newcastle (4-2-3-1): Langley; Cass, McEntee, Gamblin, Walters; Longstaff (C), Goodridge (Young 74); Allan (Russell 106), Watts, Wilson, Sorensen (Aplin 106). Unused subs: Huuhtanen, Swailes
Goals: Watts (25), Sorensen (39), Wilson (90+3)
Booked: Sorensen (unsporting behaviour, 75)
Referee: Josh Smith
Attendance: 1,000 (estimated)