Football: Rehearsal laid on by Quinn: Norwich draw hope

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The Independent Online
Norwich City. . . . 1

Manchester City. . .1

AND there we were thinking the big test for the Norwich defenders was still four days away. Dennis Bergkamp was a worry, naturally, but he was for Wednesday. First up on an English afternoon was Manchester City and Niall Quinn, and is he not only a lumbering product of a discredited league which emphasises size and muscle power at the expense of skill and technique?

As it happened Quinn was something more than that, his the performance of an international class centre-forward. Internazionale-class? Bergkamp will help us judge that but certainly no Bayern Munich striker was able to ruffle the Canaries as consistently and cleverly as Quinn did at Carrow Road.

His splendidly executed backheader was an immediate reply after Norwich had gone ahead and his promptings throughout, on the ground as well as from the air, left the home side fearing a second successive defeat before the next round of the Uefa Cup.

Looking on enviously as David White and Mike Sheron wasted good Quinn-inspired opportunities was Chris Sutton who tried unsuccessfully to strike a worthwhile rapport with Rob Newman. Normally a defender, Newman, through injuries, is having to help in the search for goals.

With both Mark Robins and Efan Ekoku continuing to occupy the treatment table, Mike Walker has limited options to partner Sutton, who is a handful in the mould of Manchester's World Cup-bound Irishman. It might be as well to push Ruel Fox inside where his pace and trickery can wreak even more havoc, assuming Saturday's goalscorer recovers from the muscle injury that forced his withdrawal midway through the second half.

Two points lost meant Norwich dropped to third in the table but their manager had seen enough to make him think they were in the right mood to bring about another overthrow of Europe's ruling class. 'People are throwing the names of Bergkamp and Sosa at me but Bayern had Matthaus and Wouters so why shouldn't we be confident?' he challenged. 'Inter had us watched against Arsenal in the Coca-Cola Cup (a 0-3 defeat) and, hopefully, like Munich they will make the same mistake of underestimating us.'

Goals: Fox (58) 1-0; Quinn (60) 1-1.

Norwich City (4-4-2): Gunn; Culverhouse, Polston, Butterworth, Bowen; Fox (Sutch, 68), Crook, Megson, Goss; Sutton, Newman. Substitutes not used: Marshall (gk), Ullathorne.

Manchester City (4-4-2): Coton; Edghill, Kernaghan, Curle, Phelan; White, Lomas, McMahon, Simpson; Quinn, Sheron (Griffith, 68). Substitutes not used: Dibble (gk), Vonk.

Referee: K Hackett (Sheffield).