Championship
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Norwich City 1-0 Swansea City: Emi Buendia sends Canaries five points clear

Emi Buendia scores
Emi Buendia's match-winning strike was his fifth goal of the season

Emi Buendia's stunning strike earned Norwich City victory over Swansea and lifted them five points clear at the top of the Championship.

The leaders had been second best for much of the first half, but improved after the break and claimed all three points when the Argentine forward fired home from 15 yards.

Swansea built on a positive start to the game and registered eight attempts at goal in the opening 45 minutes, forcing home goalkeeper Tim Krul into several saves.

First the former Newcastle man palmed away Daniel James' angled drive, then kept out George Byers' long-range effort before clawing out Bersant Celina's deflected 25-yard shot.

In contrast, Norwich struggled for openings, as top scorer Teemu Pukki dragged their best chance wide from 15 yards after racing on to Buendia's pass.

But the Canaries' only effort on target of the game nine minutes into the second half proved crucial as Buendia skipped past the challenge of Matt Grimes and rifled home a powerful left-footed effort past Kristoffer Nordfeldt.

Pukki went close to a second late on but saw his low shot come back off the post, forcing the Finn to wait in his bid to become the first Norwich player to score 25 league goals in a season since Chris Sutton in 1993.

Swansea, who were only able to name six substitutes after striker Oli McBurnie was forced to miss the game through illness, posed less of a threat after the break but went close to an equaliser when defender Mike van der Hoorn headed over from a corner.

However, Norwich held on to claim their sixth win in seven games to not only extend their lead over second-placed Leeds but also move seven points clear of Sheffield United in third.

The Blades host South Yorkshire rivals Rotherham United on Saturday, while Leeds travel to play-off chasing Bristol City.

Norwich boss Daniel Farke told BBC Radio Norfolk:

"It was a complicated game as Swansea were fantastic. They are by far the best team we have played in recent months.

"Our pressing in the first half was on the same level as recent games but wasn't good enough because Swansea had many solutions and were able to bypass us.

"We had to change a few details at half-time and we were much better in the second half, so I'm pleased we were able to win and get a clean sheet.

"I am unbelievably happy we were able to handle this difficult task and that is my biggest joy. Tomorrow evening perhaps we will have a short look at the table and see what this result means."

Swansea boss Graham Potter:

"It was a performance the players can be proud of.

"We were up against a good side who usually outscore teams convincingly, but we restricted them to very few opportunities and had a few chances ourselves.

"We were always in the game although we didn't really do enough in the final third to get a result.

On McBurnie's absence: "Oli felt ill when he came down here, there was a bit of fever and he was driven home today.

"For the first time since I have been here, we came down with just 18 players because we wanted to leave a few players back home with the midweek match against West Brom in mind.

"So we had to go with just six on the bench."

Line-ups

Norwich

  • 1Krul
  • 37Aarons
  • 6Zimmermann
  • 4Godfrey
  • 12Lewis
  • 23McLean
  • 19Trybull
  • 17BuendíaBooked at 80minsSubstituted forLeitnerat 90'minutes
  • 18StiepermannSubstituted forVrancicat 84'minutes
  • 25Hernández
  • 22PukkiSubstituted forKloseat 90+3'minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Vrancic
  • 10Leitner
  • 11Rhodes
  • 15Klose
  • 31Hanley
  • 33McGovern
  • 36Cantwell

Swansea

  • 1Nordfeldt
  • 23Roberts
  • 5van der Hoorn
  • 17Carter-VickersBooked at 90mins
  • 26Naughton
  • 28ByersSubstituted forJohnat 81'minutes
  • 21Grimes
  • 12DyerSubstituted forMcKayat 68'minutes
  • 10Celina
  • 15RoutledgeSubstituted forBaker-Richardsonat 68'minutes
  • 20James

Substitutes

  • 19McKay
  • 24John
  • 25Mulder
  • 27Fulton
  • 46Baker-Richardson
  • 50Harries
Referee:
Robert Jones
Attendance:
26,360

Match Stats

Home TeamNorwichAway TeamSwansea
Possession
Home48%
Away52%
Shots
Home8
Away12
Shots on Target
Home1
Away5
Corners
Home7
Away8
Fouls
Home13
Away15

Live Text

Match ends, Norwich City 1, Swansea City 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Norwich City 1, Swansea City 0.

Substitution

Substitution, Norwich City. Timm Klose replaces Teemu Pukki.

Booking

Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City).

Kenny McLean (Norwich City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Norwich City. Moritz Leitner replaces Emiliano Buendía.

Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Mike van der Hoorn.

Foul by Mike van der Hoorn (Swansea City).

Emiliano Buendía (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Teemu Pukki (Norwich City) hits the left post with a right footed shot from outside the box. Assisted by Emiliano Buendía.

Attempt missed. Mike van der Hoorn (Swansea City) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Matt Grimes with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Swansea City. Conceded by Emiliano Buendía.

Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Teemu Pukki (Norwich City).

Substitution

Substitution, Norwich City. Mario Vrancic replaces Marco Stiepermann.

Attempt missed. Barrie McKay (Swansea City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Bersant Celina following a set piece situation.

Daniel James (Swansea City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Emiliano Buendía (Norwich City).

Substitution

Substitution, Swansea City. Declan John replaces George Byers.

Foul by Mike van der Hoorn (Swansea City).

Marco Stiepermann (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Booking

Emiliano Buendía (Norwich City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Daniel James (Swansea City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Emiliano Buendía (Norwich City).

Attempt missed. Connor Roberts (Swansea City) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right following a set piece situation.

Kyle Naughton (Swansea City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Kenny McLean (Norwich City).

Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Matt Grimes.

Corner, Norwich City. Conceded by Connor Roberts.

Foul by Barrie McKay (Swansea City).

Christoph Zimmermann (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Courtney Baker-Richardson (Swansea City).

Jamal Lewis (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Kyle Naughton (Swansea City).

Emiliano Buendía (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Swansea City. Barrie McKay replaces Nathan Dyer.

Substitution

Substitution, Swansea City. Courtney Baker-Richardson replaces Wayne Routledge.

Attempt missed. Bersant Celina (Swansea City) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by George Byers.

Connor Roberts (Swansea City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich36219672452772
2Leeds35207859382167
3Sheff Utd35198859342565
4West Brom35179967472060
5Middlesbrough341513638241458
6Bristol City34159104436854
7Derby35159114543254
8Birmingham35121495345850
9Nottm Forest35121494740750
10Hull35148135048250
11Aston Villa35111596153848
12Preston351212115449548
13Sheff Wed351212114148-748
14Swansea35138144543247
15Brentford3412101258461246
16Stoke351014113742-544
17Blackburn351111134755-844
18QPR35126174255-1342
19Wigan3599173449-1536
20Millwall35810173853-1534
21Reading35712163751-1433
22Rotherham35615143756-1933
23Bolton3568212255-3326
24Ipswich35312202759-3221
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