Norwich 2-1 Aston Villa: Jordan Rhodes double earns comeback win for Canaries

In-form Norwich recovered from an early deficit to beat Aston Villa 2-1 at Carrow Road and move up to fourth in the Sky Bet Championship table.

Villa made an excellent start to Dean Smith’s second match in charge and went ahead after 19 minutes when James Chester nodded home a corner via a slight deflection off marker Tom Trybull.

But hopes of a second successive win under the new head coach disappeared in the second half as Jordan Rhodes struck twice for the impressive hosts.

The striker produced a fine header from a corner to level early in the second period and wrapped up the points with 18 minutes left with a well-taken second.

Manager Daniel Farke was forced into a late change to his starting line-up, with Alex Tettey’s wife having given birth on the eve of the game.

Tom Trybull came in to plug the gap in midfield as the Canaries looked to build on Saturday’s impressive 2-1 win at Nottingham Forest that lifted the visitors into the play-off places.

However, it was Villa who made the brighter start, with Tammy Abraham almost converting an Ahmed Elmohamady cross in the opening stages.

A Norwich side with just one defeat in 10 games soon found their rhythm however and Todd Cantwell put a decent chance over the crossbar after a cross from fellow youngster Jamal Lewis had been headed into his path.

It was against the run of play when Villa opened the scoring on 19 minutes. An in-swinging corner from the right by the recalled Conor Hourihane found the head of Chester on the edge of the six-yard box and the Wales international powered home.

Although the hosts were having more of the ball, Villa came within inches of making it 2-0 just after the half-hour mark, with Abraham sending a low shot against the upright and Max Aarons needing to make a last-ditch block to prevent Albert Adomah from firing home the rebound.

Hourihane also went close just after the break, sending a curling effort just wide, but Villa then suffered two injury setbacks, with Abraham and Adomah both having to be replaced, and their evening took another turn for the worse on 54 minutes when Norwich equalised.

This time it was the visitors who were unable to defend a corner and Rhodes took full advantage of Emi Buendia’s excellent delivery to head home his first home goal for the Canaries, and his sixth of the season in total.

Defender Timm Klose, the two-goal hero against Forest, then worked himself a good shooting position but was well off target but it was not long before the hosts got their noses in front.

Marco Stiepermann sent in a low cross from the left after a slick Norwich move and Rhodes was on hand to convert the ball past wrong-footed keeper Orjan Nyland to seal all three points.

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