PrestonPreston North End1NorwichNorwich City3

Preston North End 1-3 Norwich City

James Maddison scores Norwich's third goal
James Maddison marked his first senior appearance for Norwich with the final goal

Norwich City eased to victory over Preston North End at Deepdale on an afternoon that the Canaries' slim Championship play-off hopes were ended.

Fulham's victory over Aston Villa in the early kick-off was enough to put a top-six finish out of Norwich's reach with three games remaining.

Josh Murphy pounced to put Norwich 2-0 up after Graham Dorrans' deflected finish had opened the scoring.

Thomas Spurr pulled one back, only for James Maddison to add a third late on.

Defeat also put Preston out of top-six contention as they fell two points behind Norwich - a side they have failed to finish above in the English football pyramid since the 2009-10 season, when the Canaries won promotion from League One as champions and the Lillywhites finished 17th in the Championship.

Dorrans gave the visitors the advantage with a 25-yard strike that took a slight deflection on its way to beating Preston goalkeeper Chris Maxwell to find the bottom corner.

A flicked pass back from Cameron Jerome allowed Murphy time to pick his spot and double the lead before the break, while Aiden McGeady went closest to hitting back before half-time with powerfully struck shot wide.

Both sides had chances after the break and Spurr gave Preston hope, heading home from Paul Gallagher's free-kick, before the hosts twice threatened to level as John Ruddy foiled Tom Barkhuizen and Paul Huntington headed wide.

Maddison, however, put the result beyond doubt with his first senior goal for the club.

Preston manager Simon Grayson:

"We left ourselves too much to do after the first half. We started well for the first few minutes but after that we were a shadow of ourselves.

"We didn't have any energy about us; we didn't stop the opposition from playing and they have some very talented players.

"Half-time is the angriest I've been for a long time. I said to the players we want to finish the season strongly, and it's a real disappointment because I don't want to finish the season with that kind of performance. Three games to go and we need to do something about it."

Norwich caretaker manager Alan Irvine:

"I thought it was a really good performance but we could even have had more goals in the first half which would have killed the game off.

"Thankfully we got the third goal just before the end.

"I like playing gifted, talented, attacking players. We try to get as many out there as we can without having an unbalanced team. I thought to a man the players did really well today."



Formation 4-4-2

  • 22Maxwell
  • 2VermijlSubstituted forHorganat 62'minutes
  • 24Boyle
  • 23Huntington
  • 3CunninghamSubstituted forSpurrat 10'minutes
  • 29Barkhuizen
  • 12Gallagher
  • 8Browne
  • 14McGeady
  • 37RobinsonSubstituted forJohnsonat 82'minutes
  • 25Hugill


  • 7Horgan
  • 9Makienok
  • 10Beckford
  • 11Johnson
  • 17Spurr
  • 21May
  • 40Hudson


Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Ruddy
  • 25Pinto
  • 5Martin
  • 24Bennett
  • 3Dijks
  • 8Howson
  • 4Dorrans
  • 7Naismith
  • 21PritchardSubstituted forMaddisonat 79'minutes
  • 31MurphyBooked at 81mins
  • 10JeromeSubstituted forOliveiraat 79'minutes


  • 2Whittaker
  • 9Oliveira
  • 17Wildschut
  • 22Murphy
  • 28Maddison
  • 33McGovern
  • 35Godfrey
James Adcock

Match Stats

Home TeamPrestonAway TeamNorwich
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Preston North End 1, Norwich City 3.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Preston North End 1, Norwich City 3.

  3. Post update

    Foul by James Maddison (Norwich City).

  4. Post update

    Aiden McGeady (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  5. Goal!

    Goal! Preston North End 1, Norwich City 3. James Maddison (Norwich City) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Steven Naismith with a through ball.

  6. Post update

    Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Chris Maxwell.

  7. Post update

    Attempt saved. Nélson Oliveira (Norwich City) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Graham Dorrans.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Nélson Oliveira (Norwich City).

  9. Post update

    Andrew Boyle (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  10. Post update

    Attempt missed. Jordan Hugill (Preston North End) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Andrew Boyle.

  11. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Daryl Horgan (Preston North End) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Chris Maxwell.

  12. Post update

    Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Chris Maxwell.

  13. Post update

    Attempt saved. Jonny Howson (Norwich City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by James Maddison.

  14. Post update

    Foul by James Maddison (Norwich City).

  15. Post update

    Paul Huntington (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  16. Post update

    Steven Naismith (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  17. Post update

    Foul by Paul Gallagher (Preston North End).

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, Preston North End. Daniel Johnson replaces Callum Robinson.

  19. Booking

    Josh Murphy (Norwich City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Josh Murphy (Norwich City).

As It Stood

5Sheff Wed432291256421475
12Aston Villa431513154546-158
18Bristol City43139215663-748
21Nottm Forest43129225668-1245
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