Struggling Norwich hand Bees a fourth straight defeat

Pukki (pen)

Two first-half goals goals helped bottom club Norwich seal a deserved victory over Brentford as the Bees sunk to a fourth successive defeat.

The visitors took the lead inside six minutes after Brentford half cleared Milot Rashica’s smart cross, then allowed Mathias Normann to waltz towards the box and roll the ball past Alvaro Fernandez.

Brentford tested the Canaries defence with long throws from either side of the pitch and Mathias Jensen forced Tim Krul into a crucial close-range save with his legs.

But it was the visitors who looked the more dangerous side going forwards, belying their bottom-of-the-table status, with Normann controlling the midfield area.

Their enterprising approach paid off on the half-hour mark when the Norwegian released Pukki with a defence-splitting pass which saw the striker hauled down in the box by substitute Charlie Goode.

The Finn then slammed home the subsequent spot kick to give his side a lead they never relinquished.

Brentford boss Thomas Frank, who was forced to take off Zanka after just 12 minutes with an ankle injury, made his second change at half-time with Saman Ghoddos replacing Vitaly Janelt in an attempt to force a way back into the game.

But it was Norwich who started the second half the stronger and Pukki should have put the game to bed when he was teed up inside the box by Brandon Williams but shot narrowly wide.

That let off sparked the Bees into life and they immediately thought they’d halved the arrears when Bryan Mbeumo burst through and beat Krul with a low finish only for VAR to rule he was offside.

As they have done so often this season, the home side bombarded the visitors’ box with a series of crosses and deep balls into the box as Norwich struggled to get out of their own half.

Krul, who made a wonderful point-blank save to deny Jansen, went from hero to villain when he completely misjudged a Ghoddos cross allowing Rico Henry to tap into an empty net to set up a nervy final 30 minutes for the previously winless Canaries.

But despite some heavy late pressure from the Bees, they held on relatively comfortable to pick up their first three points of the season.

Brentford: Fernandez, Henry (Forss 70), Pinnock, Jansson, Norgaard, Canos, Jensen, Janelt (Ghoddos 45), Zanka (Goode 12), Mbueumo, Toney.