The Canaries just keep motoring along in their quest for promotion, they’re now two points clear at the summit but can they continue their fine form against a Swansea side who could move to within four points of the play-offs with a win?
The Swans have been up and down all season, hovering in the vicinity of the play-offs but never quite getting up enough of a head of steam to actually break in to the top seven. Even if you look at their last eight games; three wins, two draws and three losses. Last time out the Welsh side beat struggling Bolton 2-0, the week before they were comfortably beaten by Sheffield Wednesday, a defeat that came after they stormed in to the next round of The FA Cup; you can see the point about inconsistency.
Swansea currently sit in 14th in the league, however they are just seven points off the play off places with a game in hand on the majority of the teams above them. The players need to rally now if they’re to have a chance at making a return to The Premier League. Norwich have lost four home games this season and are far from untouchable at Carrow Road, Swansea have picked up 19 points from 17 away games this season so an upset isn’t beyond the realms of possibility. Swansea are out at 5.0 to win the match, with a draw priced at 3.75.
Norwich represent consistency this season, they’ve lost just once in their past 10 matches and have won four of their last five. No team has outscored them this season and at no point in the last twelve matches has any team matched their goal scoring output, which is especially impressive in a league with so many high scoring teams and strikers in particular. That’s largely down to the fact they have their own talisman; Teemu Pukki. If you want to talk about consistency, he’s your man. The Fin has scored 25 goals in all competitions and averages a goal every 114 minutes, which is better than the majority of Europe’s elite. He has also chipped in with seven assists allowing the likes of Onel Hernandez and Marco Stiepermann to up their own goal tallies. It’s no surprise to see Pukki at the shortest odds of any player to score in Fridays game, he’s 4.0 first and 1.83 anytime.
There has been an average of 3.31 goals in Norwich’s matches this season and 2.56 in Swansea’s. Norwich have found the net 37 times in 17 games at home this campaign, and they haven’t relented from those numbers recently. They have scored at least three goals in eight of their last nine in front of their own fans and in those nine home games every single one has seen over 2.5 goals. A selection you can back at a price of 1.6. There’s more than just Pukki capable of getting on the scoresheet too. Norwich also have Jordan Rhodes waiting in the wings, Marco Vrancic has scored seven this season and Emiliano Buendia is always a threat. Swansea carry their own dangers too, Oli McBurnie has 16 goals this season, of which he has scored nine of those in the last 30 minutes; he could be great value as last goal scorer at 7.5.
Every game at this stage is a cup final for The Canaries. They are four points ahead of Sheffield United and two ahead of Leeds. They’ve been in destructive form at home and I struggle to see Swansea stopping them. The visitors lack the quality to get a result here, if Norwich can shut down Bersant Celina then the Welsh outfit lack a creative source that would allow them to feed McBurnie. Vrancic and McLean will be tasked with stopping the former Man City man, a job they’ve done well against some of the best number 10’s in the league. Norwich’s strength in attack will be too much for a ropey Swansea defence to handle, they’re the favourites at 1.62 for the win.
Norwich -1 @ 2.8
Over 2.5 goals @ 1.6
Teemu Pukki to score anytime @ 1.83
Norwich to score 3 or more goals in the match @ 3.1