Norwich 3-1 Swansea

By Graham ChaseBBC Sport
Norwich winger Anthony Pilkington
Pilkington was playing for non-league Atherton Collieries five years ago

Anthony Pilkington scored the quickest Premier League goal of the season after 49 seconds to set Norwich on their way to victory against Swansea.

Russell Martin added his first top-flight goal before Danny Graham pulled one back for the visitors with his second of the season.

Pilkington scored a third midway through the second half to secure Norwich's third win in four games.

Swansea are still looking for a first away point after four matches.

Lambert proud of Norwich's 'terrific' start

Manager Brendan Rodgers had promised his Swansea side would produce a much more competitive performance away from the Liberty Stadium than on previous occasions this season, but they fell behind with less than a minute gone.

Elliott Bennett's looping cross from the right was headed down at the far post by the impressive Steve Morison and Pilkington thumped in a shot from close range.

Nine minutes later the lead was doubled when Martin was left unmarked to glance in David Fox's free-kick.

But the visitors halved the deficit within two minutes when Scott Sinclair burst into the area and, despite going down under Bennett's challenge, stabbed the ball across for Graham to score with a cross-shot.

Norwich continued to dominate, with Pilkington just missing from a narrow angle and Morison having a shot pushed wide by keeper Michel Vorm. Bennett also went close but his cross bounced off the bar just before the interval.

The tempo slowed dramatically after the break, though Sinclair came close to an equaliser with a low drive from 25 yards.

But from Fox's corner, Leon Barnett won a header and Bradley Johnson calmly lifted the ball across the box for Pilkington to score his second from close range.

Sinclair shot well over the bar from 30 yards to sum up Swansea's mounting frustration before Johnson forced a decent save from Vorm at the other end.

Grant Holt came off the bench for Norwich but was also denied by Vorm before Ashley Williams's sliding challenge stopped Wes Hoolahan getting a shot away from the rebound.

Swansea away form concerns Brendan Rodgers

In a rare Swansea opening, substitute Stephen Dobbie shot straight at Marc Tierney before heading the follow-up straight to goalkeeper John Ruddy.

But otherwise Norwich's lead was never under real threat and Dobbie limped off with an ankle problem to leave Swansea to play the final minutes with 10 men.

After starting the season with two points from four matches, Norwich have now picked up nine from four games to move into the top half of the table.

Norwich manager Paul Lambert:

"I have been proud for the last two years with what the players have done and today we were excellent.

"Swansea came back at us after they got the goal back but the start we made was terrific and gave us something to build on. We were excellent in the second half.

"We've got to win more games than not and we're doing that at the moment."

Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers:

"We were disappointed to be 2-0 down before we even got going but the response and reaction to that was terrific.

"We've had four clean sheets and identified the threat at set-pieces from wide areas so to concede two of the goals from set-pieces is disappointing.

"The first year is very much about the home form and trying to pick up points away. We need to improve but the players are honest and one thing we've always done is bounce back."

Live text commentaryexternal-link

Top Stories