Lambert stays cool as Norwich slide to third

Watford 2 Norwich City 2

Norwich manager Paul Lambert was unconcerned that his side dropped out of the automatic promotion places with a 2-2 draw against Watford last night and is excited about an unpredictable conclusion to the season.

"We will do everything we can to try and drive on," Lambert said. "Lots of teams will be to-ing and fro-ing but I'm relishing it. The achievement of the players has been incredible, I don't think anyone would have visualised our achievement at the start of the season."

Substitute Simeon Jackson was only on the pitch for 11 minutes before he sealed a point for Norwich from close range. The forward was at the back post to tap in Grant Holt's low cross on 69 minutes. The goal maintained Norwich's record of not losing back-to-back matches since May 2009. "It shows our desire after being beaten on Saturday against Swansea – we've come back strongly with this result," Lambert added. "It is a huge point for us."

Norwich started with a perfect response to their 3-0 defeat by their promotion rivals with an opener after only 77 seconds last night. Sam Vokes, on loan from Wolves until the end of the season, got his first goal for his adopted club since joining last month. Holt played the ball between two defenders and the 21-year-old controlled it with his chest before patiently delaying his shot until he could cleverly chip it over Scott Loach from six yards out.

But Championship top-scorer Danny Graham drew Watford level on 25 minutes with his 24th league goal of the season, bursting through the middle before finishing low under John Ruddy.

The 25-year-old then turned provider 11 minutes later. He bolted down the right channel and carried the ball into the box before playing a low cross into Don Cowie who took a touch and then hit a powerful strike that crashed off the underside of the bar on its way in.

Malky Mackay, the Watford manager, was furious referee Anthony Taylor did not send off Holt, who was booked in the first half and then committed fouls throughout the match. "The referee showed great inconsistency," he said. "I'm disappointed with his actions towards Grant Holt."

Watford (4-3-3): Loach; Doyley, Hodson, Taylor, Mariappa; Cowie, Eustace, Jenkins (Drinkwater, 83); Deeney, Sordell (Weimann, 72), Graham. Substitutes not used Gilmartin, Buckley, Mingoia, Thompson. Booked Graham, Eustace, Doyley.

Norwich (4-3-3): Ruddy; Dawson, Whitbread, Ward, Tierney; Surman (Lansbury, 63), Crofts, Fox; Pacheco (McNamee, 58), Vokes (Jackson, 58), Holt. Substitutes not used Rudd, Edwards, Hughes, Lappin. Booked Holt.

Match rating 8/10.

Man of the match Graham.

Referee A Taylor (Lancashire).

Attendance 13,777.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

The ZX Spectrum is back

The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

The quirks of work perks

From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

Is bridge becoming hip?

The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

The rise of Lego Clubs

How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
5 best running glasses

On your marks: 5 best running glasses

Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada