Pukki proved so pivotal again as the Canaries party cranks up a notch in Swansea
Our latest Norwich City player watch kept an eye on striker TEEMU PUKKI as the Finn played a pivotal role in the leaders’ emphatic win at Swansea, scoring his 10th league goal of the season.
4 – Emi Buendia nudges a ball through to Pukki, who takes the early shot but fires low and it’s easy enough for home keeper Erwin Mulder to hold.
6 – Drops deep to prevent Leroy Fer passing in midfield as City force a home counter all the way back to the Swansea keeper.
7 – Marco Stiepermann tries to use him for a one-two but loose touch and out-muscled by Fer.
10 – Jamal Lewis threads the forward into the left channel, no offside given, pulls back towards Stiepermann but the ball is cleared.
12 – Matt Grimes swings in a corner from the left, Pukki does enough to stop Joe Rodon getting a header in at the back post.
14 – Alex Tettey surges forward and threads Pukki into right channel, tries to back-heel round Rodon but loses possession, Swans counter and win a free-kick on the edge of the City box but Tim Krul denies Bersant Celina.
16 – ASSIST – Stiepermann threads the Finn into the right channel, pushes forward and crosses low with Onel Hernandez waiting to finish at the back post, but Mike van der Hoorn turns past his own keeper on the stretch for 1-0.
20 – Good strength to hold off van der Hoorn and keep a City attack alive but then robbed by a crunching Fer tackle.
21 – Buendia tries to thread Pukki into right channel but van der Hoorn shows good strength to see out for a goal-kick under pressure.
26 – Buendia cross from the right misses everyone but Pukki is alive and rescues, can’t pick out Hernandez in the box though.
29 – Lewis and Buendia with a quick counter, Pukki shovels on to Hernandez and Lewis great pace to keep the ball in but cross is cleared, slick play.
34 – Stiepermann charges down Kyle Naughton’s clearance, Hernandez gets Pukki through on the left, tries to squeeze in a shot from an acute angle but easy for the keeper to hold.
35 – Buendia again plays him through, dinks under Grimes and lashes a low shot against the left-back’s shins from the edge of the box.
37 - Buendia wins a header centrally, Pukki spreads right to Max Aarons and low cross from the right allows Stiepermann to turn in at the back post for 3-0.
60 – GOAL – Beaten in the air by Rodon trying to win a Krul goal-kick but City recycle and Stiepermann spreads left to Hernandez, who toys with Connor Roberts, turns inside and finds Pukki, who takes a touch to keep the ball under his spell and prods home from close range for the vital fourth goal.
68 – Good play from Hernandez to find Pukki, drop of the shoulder to shoot from 20 yards but Rodon deflects behind.
78 – Exchanges a nice one-two with Stiepermann as City counter, eventually Buendia can’t squeeze him through on goal.
85 – Nice play allows Cantwell to free Pukki on the left but Rodon is quickly across to put the ball out for a throw.
89 – Chipped pass from Mario Vrancic and cuts on to his left but can’t get a shot on goal as the ball is charged down.
Verdict: The crucial goal City needed, after forcing the opener and playing a key role in the third – you just can’t underestimate how important Pukki is to the Canaries. A total of 11 goals and four assists from 17 games in all competitions, the free signing every Championship club now wishes they’d made.
Rating: 8 out of 10