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Saints 1 Norwich 1
5:40pm Wednesday 28th November 2012 in Sport
This live event has finished
- Rickie Lambert gives Saints the lead on 32 minutes
- Paulo Gazzaniga lets Robert Snodgrass's free kick squirm through him for the equaliser moments before half time
- Seven points from the last nine for Saints
- Saints third from bottom
Saints unchanged from how they started the day as third from bottom
Full time - Saints 1 Norwich 1
Late changes for both teams with Jay Rodriguez on for Puncheon.
Elliott Bennett on for Snodgrass for Norwich.
Four minutes of stoppage time.
Slightly frantic stuff now.
Norwich have a decent penalty appeal waved away as Shaw challenges Snodgrass from behind in the area before Lambert fires over from inside the area at the other end.
Saints make a change on 85 minutes with Shaw limping off after that challenge for Ben Reeves.
First change for Norwich on 81 minutes. Morison on for Holt who doesn't look happy and disappears straight down the tunnel.
This is really not a classic but the three points are there for the taking.
Another win for Saints would be massive and having got this far they have more than ten minutes left to do it.
Great effort from Jason Puncheon.
He cut in from the right onto his left foot and his curling shot was creeping in at the far post but Bunn does well to save.
Good save from Gazzaniga.
Holt got free at the far post from a corner.
His header was on target.
You would have expected Gazzaniga to make the save and he did.
For the first time in the game Norwich are the better team
Fairly even once more in the second half
Great free kick routine from Saints sees Ramirez pick out Jose Fonte unmarked at the far post. Not the best finish though as his volley somehow manages to go backwards.
The second half is underway
Half time - Saints 1 Norwich 1
GOAL - 45 minutes
Horrible error from Paulo Gazzaniga.
Clyne the first player in the book for a bit of a rash challenge to concede a free kick on the edge of the area on the right side.
Robert Snodgrass steps up to take it, trying to drill it low with his left foot.
It's not a great strike and Gazzaniga appears to have it covered diving down to his left but he lets it squirm through his body.
Saints 1 Norwich 1
Inswinging free kick from the other side from Gaston Ramirez just needed any sort of touch to divert it in but it flashes just wide of the far post
GOAL - 32 minutes - Lambert
Saints get a double stroke of luck to take the lead.
Adam Lallana whips in a right footed free kick from left. A Saints header comes off the back of a Norwich head and pinballs straight to Lambert.
The ball appeared to strike his hand but it was from point blank range and Mark Clattenburg didn't blow up.
Lambert slides down to meet the ball and guides it past Mark Bunn and into the bottom corner
Saints 1 Norwich 0
Really not too much in this. Certainly not a very good game.
Saints are the better team on the ball and are showing by far the greater attacking threat, but there have been very few chances.
Norwich are remaining tight aad compact and getting men behind the ball, which makes it hard.
Lallana shows great technique to volley a left footed shot just over the bar from Lambert's cross.
Norwich are getting numbers behind the ball which is making it hard for Saints.
That said they have not looked like creating anything yet.
Lambert cushions a header back across goal but Norwich are able to clear
Saints looking bright in the opening stages of the game
The game is underway
The game is underway
We are moments away from kick-off at St Mary's
Norwich manager Chris Hughton has "no fears" about Mark Bunn proving himself an able deputy for John Ruddy withthe England goalkeeper out of the Saints game.
Ruddy has conceded just two goals in his last six appearances as the Canaries recovered from an appalling start to the season.
However, the 26-year-old hobbled out during the closing stages at Everton on Saturday, where a last-minute equaliser from Sebastien Bassong extended Norwich's unbeaten run to seven matches.
His absence tonight means Bunn, signed from Blackburn in August, will be set for his first Barclays Premier League start since January.
Hughton, though, has every confidence in the 28-year-old, who saved a crucial last-gasp penalty from Clint Dempsey as Norwich knocked Tottenham out of the Capital One Cup last month.
"Mark is a good goalkeeper, and if it is a case that he comes in for whatever period of time, then we have no fears about that," Hughton said.
"When we brought him in originally that was the exact reason, because of his experience."
Norwich: Bunn, Garrido, Bassong, R Bennett, Whittaker, Pilkington, Johnson, Tettey, Snodgrass, Hoolahan, Holt.
Subs: Rudd, R Martin, Howson, Jackson, Morison, E Bennett, Barnett.
Saints: Gazzaniga, Clyne, Fonte, Yoshida, Shaw, Puncheon, Schneiderlin, Cork, Lallana, Ramírez, Lambert.
Subs: K Davis, Hooiveld, Reeves, S Davis, Rodriguez, Do Prado, Mayuka.
Saints name an unchanged side for the fourth game in a row
Tonight's game is also notable for the return to refereeing of Mark Clattenburg.
Nigel Adkins is also in bouyant mood.
"We've had 13 different goalscorers this season so we've got goals throughout the team, but the important thing for us is can we build on the clean sheet from the last game against Newcastle," Adkins said.
"We had a steady and stable back four and goalkeeper which is something we haven't had since the start of the campaign due to injuries, and the players are all working very hard as a team together.
"The players are working very hard on the training ground and what we've got is a group of players who are getting the just rewards for putting the work in home and away.
"We've accustomed ourselves very quickly the demands of the Premier League.
"We talk about lessons learned throughout the campaign and the players are working very, very hard to improve.
"There's a forward momentum about ourselves, and a growing belief about everybody.
"Sunday's performance was really good. We've got Gaston Ramirez, Adam Lallana, and Jason Puncheon with Rickie Lambert, and there was a good solid base behind them as a platform for some great attacking football that got the supporters off their feet at the weekend."
Norwich boss Chris Hughton on tonight's game: "Southampton are a team playing well at the moment, they are at home, and we will need to give a good account of ourselves to get something.
"It is about going into our game the way we have of late, showing our confidence, and trying to nullify the quality that they have got, but also play our own game."
For Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy is a major doubt. Mark Bunn is standing by to deputise.
Norwich will definitely be without centre-back Michael Turner because of a shoulder problem, although versatile defender Russ Martin is fit again following his back injury.
The early team news for Saints is that top scorer Rickie Lambert is expected to have overcome a knock and should feature against former Rochdale team-mate Grant Holt.
Lambert came off in the 2-0 defeat of Newcastle due to the leg complaint, but trained yesterday and should be involved against the Canaries.
However, the game could come too soon for Danny Fox after missing Sunday with a knee complaint, while Frazer Richardson and Richard Chaplow are also expect to remain sidelined.
It's just over two hours until kick off at St Mary's as Saints prepare to take on Norwich.
Nigel Adkins' men are hoping to make it back-to-back top flight wins, the first time they will have done that since October 2003.
If they can keep successive clean sheets it will be the first time they have managed that in the Premier League since September 2003.
Norwich though travel to St Mary's in good form and could prove a tougher test than QPR and Newcastle.