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Premier League: Norwich City 1 Manchester United 0

An Anthony Pilkington header was enough for Norwich City to secure a shock 1-0 victory over Manchester United at Carrow Road.

Pilkington, a former Old Trafford youth player, headed the hosts in front from an excellent Javier Garrido cross to earn his side three points in the English Premier League clash on Saturday.

John Ruddy was forced into a stoppage-time save off the head of Sebastien Bassong and second-half substitute Danny Welbeck went close with a deflected header, but Chris Hughton’s side held on for a famous win.

The visitors launched straight into the ascendancy and went close in the third minute through Robin van Persie, who forced Ruddy into a save with a low, curling effort.

Norwich responded immediately as Robert Snodgrass blasted over with a speculative volley, before Pilkington dragged a shot across goal after a clever Wes Hoolahan pass.

The two sides traded chances early on as Ruddy was tested again by an Ashley Young free-kick in the 15th minute but saved comfortably, and Hoolahan found space 20 yards from goal but could not beat Anders Lindegaard.

The hosts should have gone ahead after 25 minutes, when Pilkington’s clever disguised pass released Garrido on the left-hand side, but Grant Holt could not connect with the full-back’s driven cross.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s side finished the half the stronger as van Persie and Young both went close.

The visitors started brightly after the interval and again went close through van Persie, who brought down a pass from Young and held off a challenge, only to scuff a shot harmlessly into Ruddy’s body.

But Norwich were ahead just before the hour-mark, when a superb move involving Hoolahan and Holt released the overlapping Garrido.

The Spaniard’s cross from the left was brilliantly headed over and beyond Lindegaard by Pilkington, who timed his run perfectly.

Substitute Paul Scholes began to control the midfield and Welbeck nearly pulled his side level, but his header from a Young cross deflected off Bassong and wide for a corner.

The hosts had the chance to kill the game off on the counter-attack as Steve Morison played in Jonny Howson, but with just Lindegaard to beat the midfielder dragged his shot hopelessly wide.

Ruddy was twice called into action late on, first tipping over a Bassong header, before managing to hold on to a stinging Anderson drive to ensure Norwich took all three points.

Sat 17 Nov, 2012
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