Soccer

Yaser Asprilla nets winner as Watford come from behind to beat Norwich

Yaser Asprilla netted the winner as Watford beat Norwich (Rhianna Chadwick/PA)
Yaser Asprilla netted the winner as Watford beat Norwich (Rhianna Chadwick/PA) Yaser Asprilla netted the winner as Watford beat Norwich (Rhianna Chadwick/PA)

Yaser Asprilla’s goal saw Watford come back from 2-0 down to beat Norwich 3-2 in an entertaining contest at Vicarage Road.

Danny Batth headed home his first Canaries goal before Hwang Ui-jo doubled the lead with a long-range strike.

Watford levelled thanks to two goals in three minutes after the half-hour mark from Ismael Kone and Mileta Rajovic.

Colombia forward Asprilla completed the comeback in the 77th minute with a strike the Canaries insisted should not have stood.

It took Norwich three minutes to take the lead from a corner to the back post from Gabriel Sara.

Batth outjumped a team-mate to head past Hornets goalkeeper Ben Hamer, who will not have been impressed by his static defenders.

Hwang doubled the lead nine minutes later with a cracking finish but again Watford were found wanting at the back.

Ryan Porteous gifted possession to Sara, who set the South Korean up for a 25-yard drive that went over Hamer and dipped under the bar.

It was to be the striker’s one and only contribution, however, as he was replaced five minutes later by Ashley Barnes due to injury.

Earlier in the day, Hwang – who had scored the winner against QPR on Saturday – had been dropped from the national team until a police investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct was concluded.

Hamer, in for suspended first-choice goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann, soon had to tip over a header from Shane Duffy as Norwich threatened again.

Watford almost pulled a goal back when George Long fumbled a long-ranger from ex-Canary Jamal Lewis. Kone latched on to the loose ball but the keeper recovered to make a vital block.

Kone made no mistake in the 30th minute, however, with a run and drive from the edge of the box into the far corner for his first Watford goal – and the hosts were level three minutes later.

Lewis made his way into the box on the left and floated over an inviting cross for Rajovic to head home from close range to register his fourth goal in five games.

Hamer did well to deny Adam Idah before Long had to tip over a goal-bound Asprilla drive in the half’s final attack.

Long did well to stop Ryan Andrews’ deflected cross loop over him in the 53rd minute as Watford carried on where they had left off.

Kone then saw a rocket of a shot smash back off the crossbar from a similar position to his earlier goal, with Long smothering a follow up from Edo Kayembe.

Norwich’s resistance ended in the 77th minute when Asprilla showed great skill to take the ball round Long before unleashing a shot that crossed the line before Dimi Giannoulis could block.

Norwich argued that a number of Watford players had been offside when Long parried Wes Hoedt’s shot into Asprilla’s path but referee Simon Hooper awarded the goal.

Hamer denied Norwich substitute Borja Sainz a late equaliser with another impressive tip over.