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Teemu Pukki bags brace as Norwich claim victory at Bristol City

Norwich City v Wycombe Wanderers – Sky Bet Championship – Carrow Road
(Image credit: Nigel French)

Teemu Pukki netted a first-half double to lead Norwich to a deserved 3-1 Championship victory over Bristol City at Ashton Gate.

There were only six minutes on the clock when Pukki struck for the first time, timing his run perfectly onto a Marco Stiepermann through ball and coolly shooting past Dan Bentley from 10 yards.

Eight minutes later it was 2-0, with Jacob Sorensen this time producing an accurate long ball forward and Pukki again controlling it before firing home with the aid of a deflection.

Jack Hunt pulled a goal back for Bristol City within a minute, netting with a half-volley at the far post from Jamie Paterson’s cross.

But in first-half stoppage time the home defence was breached by another long pass, from Ben Gibson, and Emi Buendia produced a brilliant first touch to control the ball before slotting past Bentley.

Bristol were awarded a 73rd-minute penalty when Tomas Kalas was brought down by Sorensen but Nahki Wells chipped his spot-kick tamely over the crossbar.

The result put Norwich firmly among the early Championship pace-setters, while for Bristol it was a fifth successive game without a win after their bright start.

The first half was full of attacking intent by both teams, the difference being that Bristol’s back-three had no answer to the intelligent running off the ball of Pukki, who appeared to have the freedom of the park.

Having already scored twice, he blazed over when through after 17 minutes and was then driven wide, having got behind the home defence again.

Both goalkeepers made brilliant saves, Norwich’s Tim Krul stretching out a left glove to keep out Chris Martin’s 37th-minute header from a Paterson corner.

Bentley matched that with a brave block one-on-one with Buendia three minutes later.

Wells went close for a Bristol team, who looked lively going forward, but hapless at the back.

The second half began with Stiepermann shooting just over from distance and Norwich went close again when Lukas Rupp’s low drive went past a post.

Pukki was just wide with a near-post shot from a Max Aarons cross and Bristol were hanging on.

But the hosts were still a threat going forward and Martin produced a superb 25-yard shot that beat Krul and thudded against a post after 59 minutes.

Wells should have done better when mishitting a shot at Krul following a 67th-minute free-kick chipped into the box.

The striker was substituted after his penalty miss to complete a miserable afternoon.

With Bristol going for broke, Przemyslaw Placheta had three good chances to score a fourth for Norwich, but failed to take them.

Bentley then saved well from Buendia but the visitors were good value for the three points.