Norwich City striker Teemu Pukki has praised 10-man Newcastle United for their resolute defending in the 1-1 draw at St James’ Park, between the two basement sides in the Premier League.

The Magpies got off to the worst possible start in Eddie Howe’s first home match in the dugout, as Ciaran Clark had a moment of ‘madness’, which led to him being sent off in the ninth minute.

Despite having the numerical advantage, Dean Smith’s side struggled to make the extra man count.

With Jamaal Lascelles suspended, Howe gave Callum Wilson the armband in a game that Newcastle’s number nine looked to end a four-game goal drought.

(Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)


After a penalty was finally awarded for a Billy Gilmour handball, Wilson squeezed the spot kick past former Toon stopper Tim Krul to give the Geordies the lead in the crucial six-pointer on the hour mark.

However, 18 minutes later, Pukki capitalised on a poor clearance from Martin Dubravka and smashed home a left-footed volley.

The Finland international has broken Newcastle hearts before. In 2019, in the second game of the new Premier League season, the 31-year-old scored a hat-trick in a 3-1 win for the Canaries against Newcastle.

The former Celtic man felt his side could have done more to grab all three points last night, but he accepted Newcastle deserved praise in how they nullified the threat of Dean Smith’s side and closed off space.

Newcastle United v Norwich City - Premier League
(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Speaking to the club’s official website, Pukki said: “If you play with one more player almost the whole game, you need to win it, so we’re disappointed with the rest of the game.

“Fair play to them, they did quite well with their defending and didn’t give us space to create chances, but we need to do better and we all know that.

“We didn’t create so many chance where we should have scored more. If this ever happens again, we need to be better when we have one player more.”

We certainly looked a bit more solid at the back last night, which hasn’t often been said this season. Our defence has been rotten.

But the lads showed fight and determination on Tuesday night, and it will hopefully lead to better days ahead.

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