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Audio: Anthony Pilkington repeats his Carrow Road trick against Sunderland

Anthony Pilkington scores Norwich City's eventual winner against Sunderland at Carrow Road. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Anthony Pilkington scores Norwich City's eventual winner against Sunderland at Carrow Road. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

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Anthony Pilkington made it two winners in two Premier League Carrow Road clashes as Norwich City held on to beat Sunderland and extend their unbeaten run to nine matches.

Pilkington’s solitary strike had earned all three points against leaders Manchester United last time out at Carrow Road, and the winger was happy to help deliver again as he controlled Bradley Johnson’s long pass and turned inside Carlos Cuellar before firing beyond goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.

“No it wasn’t a bad finish but the three points is the biggest thing and I thought in the first half we did really well,” said Pilkington. “We played some great football, probably as good as we’ve played all season, and then we let in a sloppy goal right at the end of the first half and that made the second half difficult for us.

“We were creating chances are passing the ball around well, and I thought we were cruising at 2-0 and, like I say, it’s just a sloppy goal at the end of the first half when we thought they weren’t really in the game.

“They weren’t creating much and went causing any problems for us. But that goal lifted Sunderland and after that they had a right good go.

“Whenever you get a goal right before half-time it lifts you although we were still winning at half-time, our heads went down a little bit and we were under pressure in the second half.

“But I have to say we have got a good, strong group and we hung on in the second half to get a good three points.

“We had to work really hard. They put us under a bit lot of pressure in the second half and it was totally different to the first half, but it’s a massive three points and we are still unbeaten.”

Pilkington’s second top-flight strike of the season sits with his eight from last term – and while it was well taken, it is still some way from his favourite goal in a yellow shirt. But he certainly knew that if he had not taken his big chance on Sunday afternoon his captain, waiting to be teed up with a tap-in, would have let him know about it.

“I think the free-kick against Villa last season, the goal against Manchester United – they don’t come much bigger than that – so I think you’re wrong there,” he smiled.

“I knew Holty was there and I knew if I didn’t score he would be on my back. And actually, after I scored he came over and he didn’t say well done for the goal, he just said you are lucky you scored.

“I knew the defender was coming over so it was either take another touch and hit it with my left foot, or chop inside and open the goal up, and luckily I made the right choice tonight.”

Pilkington is happy to wait and see whether his current performances push him into the thinking or Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni. And even though the goals are now flowing, he is happier about what is coming from them.

“It is good to be scoring but it doesn’t matter who scores the goals in the end,” he added. “I’ve got a couple and it’s always nice to score, but it doesn’t matter who scores them as long as we are picking up points – and that’s what we are doing.”

Anthony Pilkington

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  • I thought we were very lucky! Superb in the first half played Sunderland off the park - if we had an in form striker on the field we would have been 3 or 4 up and the game would have been wrapped up. Second half we just hung on and Sunderland played us off the park! Have to say I thought Holt is looking less and less like a striker and more like a utility player - working really hard for the team but not having an impact in the opposition box, Pilks looks more like our best chance for goals this season. Hoping for a new striker in January and also for Harry Kane to be fit again to give us something a bit different up front to compliment our excellent defending. Not sure about Bunn - really good shot stopper - feel Ruddy would have saved their goal....

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    kevin rymell

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Holt's body language -- as seen on TV 4,000 miles away -- showed he thought Pilks should have passed. Great strike, but credit to all the players in the long, patient build-up (15 + passes?). Misses apart, Holt had a great game: I'm trying to work out if he's a striker, a winger, a midfielder or a defender.

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    atlanta canary

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Thing about Pilks is that he can kick properly with BOTH feet. Not a common attribute, perhaps Little Benno and Whittaker, too? Certainly not Snods or Wes. Double figures please, Anthony!

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    Mad Brewer

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Fron my viewpoint in block h in the Jarrold it was the classic game of 2 halves. City totally ran the first 44 mins and the Pilkington goal , class 20 plus passes and a great finish.Lots of close passing through and around Sunderland [sometimes one pass to many perhaps], then a goal against the run of play and half time. No idea what was said at half time but the guy next to me said after 62 mins "its going to be a very long 28 mins". Talk about chalk and cheese. Back 6 and Bunn overworked, and a total lack of width on the right with Snoddy seeming to be another central midfielder.Still at the final whistle it was three points and a feeling of relief.

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    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Grant Holt is our Captain he is omni present! Another 3 hard earned points, no one is giving points away to anyone. It will be a long hard season but 40 points is certainly a target well within Norwich City's reach. A tough away game coming up, but they are all tough no matter who you play in the Premier League. Norwich are on a great run at the moment and hopefully a few more points in the bag before January. Super Wes played a stormer again.

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    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Yes, three valuable points and we cannot over-estimate the importance of that. But I do not feel we bought too well in the summer. The money we spent on numerous midfielders and players like Snodgrass might have been better spent on a quality striker. The argument that they don't come cheap is valid. But there are quality players out there at sensible money - Swansea have prove the point. The first 40 mins last night were excellent. But we have to retain more composure on the ball when we are under pressure. Numerous times we gave the ball away too cheaply in the second half which made it harder than it need have been. One final point: Pilkington is at present by far our best front man but needs someone of quality to support him and share the load - which bring me back to my point about buying a good striker!

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    malaga flier

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Massive 3 points especially as we were hanging on at the end. Great description of Wes in one of the the papers "buzzing around like a wasp with a grudge." Brilliant!

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    Flying Canary

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • kr, think that's a little harsh on Bunn - made some good saves and he's a worthy understudy to jr. Irrelavent whether he would have saved it - he wouldn't with only one thigh working. The 8 game run is pretty incredible considering it included both ManU & Arsenal plus 4 away games. I never cease to be amazed how so many fans continue to whinge no matter what happens. Of course there are areas to work on and improvements to be made. I'm sure CH already has his January targets lined up.

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    Barry Rasberry

    Monday, December 3, 2012

  • Goal scorers can be greedy, Holty was second half when Pilks was better placed - he didn't score but we need all of them wanting to score. OTBC

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    Jakarta Canary

    Monday, December 3, 2012

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