Norwich set out to prove that their win over Arsenal a few weeks ago was no fluke and they did just that by beating Manchester United 1-0 at Carrow Road. United were out played everywhere on the pitch and, this time, the Red Devils could not find a way to save the points as they surrendered all three as well as top spot in the Premier League.
It looked as if it would be Norwich's day from the beginning as United looked way off the pace at Carrow Road where the Canaries have been quite strong this season. The first half saw United dominate everywhere on the pitch but possession and corners do little when there is a failure to score and Norwich were very satisfied with their performance when the teams headed into the dressing room for halftime.
Many assumed that United would turn up the heat on Norwich at the beginning of the second half but whatever words were delivered from Sir Alex Ferguson to his charges had no effect as United came out looking toothless. There was an alarming lack of creativity in the squad and the needless giveaways that the team got away with against clubs like Arsenal and Aston Villa eventually came back to haunt them when the superb Anthony Pilkington was on the receiving end of a fantastic Javier Garrido cross that the midfielder easily put away on the hour mark. Changes were made with Paul Scholes coming on for Antonio Valencia and Danny Welbeck on for the lackluster Chicharito. The changes did very little to change the tide of the game as Norwich looked increasingly comfortable defending. United were able to fashion a few half chances that goalkeeper John Ruddy snuffed out every time. After what must have been an agonizing four minutes stoppage time for Norwich, the referee blew time on the game and handed Norwich one of their biggest wins in recent memory.
The performance of United will be very concerning for Ferguson as the Red Devils were expected to win this game easily. They were outplayed and looked increasingly helpless to improve their situation. After winning 15 points from losing positions, the streak had to end sometime and United will be left wondering what kind of repercussions this loss will have on their season.
Man of the Match: Anthony Pilkington. Had a fantastic game dictating midfield and giving United's defense real problems when getting forward. Thoroughly deserved his goal after 60 minutes.
Norwich: John Ruddy; Steven Whittaker, Sebastien Bassong, Michael Turner, Javier Garrido; Bradley Johnson, Robert Snodgrass (Elliot Bennett), Anthony Pilkington, Alexander Tettey; Grant Holt (Steve Morison), Wesley Hoolahan (Jonathan Howson)
Manchester United: Anders Lindegaard; Rafael, Patrice Evra, Rio Ferdinand (Anderson), Chris Smalling; Antonio Valencia (Paul Scholes), Ryan Giggs, Michael Carrick, Ashley Young; Chicharito (Danny Welbeck), Robin van Persie
Manchester United Next Game: Galatasaray (Champions League) Tuesday November 20
Tags: Anthony Pilkington, Carrow Road, Manchester, Manchester United, Norwich, Premier League, Sir Alex Ferguson, Soccer