Summary: Stoke moved a step closer to Premier League survival with a close-fought victory over Norwich at the Britannia Stadium.
The Potters are now eight points above the bottom three after back-to-back wins and leave Chris Hughton’s side still looking over their shoulder after third defeat in five games.
It was the visitors that went close to breaking the deadlock first when Robert Snodgrass headed over and Bradley Johnson fired over the bar in promising opening to the game for the Canaries.
Unfortunately for them it didn’t last and Tony Pulis’ men took control when Cameron Jerome’s hooked effort was blocked by the arm teammate of Steven N’Zonzi, who was lucky to remain on the field after a late lunge on Kei Kamara.
After the break, however, Stoke finally made the breakthrough a minute into the second half when Peter Crouch nodded on a long punt for Adam to control and smash past Mark Bunn.
Adam attempted to return the favour soon providing with a dangerous cross that Crouch missed completely despite being well placed with pressure from two Norwich bodies putting him off.
Tony Pulis post-match…“We deserved to win today, we created more opportunities. The three points are vital because we have tough games coming up. Our first challenge is always to stay in the Premier League, anything else is a bonus.”
Chris Hughton post-match…“We were in good form but we came up against a Stoke side that were back to their most direct. We didn’t do enough to win the game. We’ve got two home games now, which I’d like to think helps. But it’s a nervy part of the season.”
Good day for…Charlie Adam: For so long Stoke have suffered without a creative hub in midfield this season with Adam unable to recreate the form from his Blackpool days. That changed against Norwich as he orchestrated ever attack from the Potters and popped up to score the winning goal in the second half.
Bad day for…Steven N’Zonzi: Was lucky to still be on the field after a dangerous lunge on Kamara in the second half and was a red card waiting to happen for Stoke all afternoon. Thankfully for Tony Pulis referee Anthony Taylor was of the lenient persuasion.