Norwich City 0 - 1 Luton Town

Match info: FA Cup - 4th Rnd at Carrow Road

Date: 26/01/2013 KO: 15:00 Ref: A Marriner Att: 26,521

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Norwich

0
vs
1

Luton

Scott Rendell 80

FT (ht: 0-0)

  • Last Updated: January 26 2013, 20:21 GMT

Goalscorer Scott Rendell was overjoyed after his strike handed non-League Luton an historic FA Cup fourth-round victory over Norwich at Carrow Road.

Rendell savours 'unbelievable' win

Blue Square Premier Luton, 85 places lower in the football pyramid than their hosts, named 10 of the players which beat Wolves in the third round, but it was three substitutes who combined in the 80th minute as Rendell converted JJ O'Donnell's cross following Stuart Fleetwood's pass.

The 1-0 victory saw top-flight opposition beaten by a side outside the Football League for the first time in 24 years and the first time in the Barclays Premier League era; since Sutton beat Coventry in 1989.

"It's unbelievable to score the winner in a cup tie like this," Rendell said. "It's an unbelievable feeling to come to a Premiership club like Norwich and turn them over.

"It's fantastic to be part of history. We were aware of it. It's been a fantastic day for everyone."

Goalkeeper Mark Tyler celebrated victory against his hometown club, 20 years after he was released by the Canaries as a schoolboy.

Twice Tyler made important saves - from Simeon Jackson in the first half and substitute Grant Holt in the second and the one time he was beaten ex-Hatter Leon Barnett's headed crashed off the post - but he was rarely troubled otherwise.

The 35-year-old said: "It's my job. The hard part about today was the emotional side, coming back here playing. It's where I started. This is where I wanted to be as a little boy playing football.

"To come back here, play, keep a clean sheet, means the absolute world to me and my family. The boys done brilliantly in front of me, limited them to two chances.

"We countered in the second half and the subs made the impact and it was a great finish."

Rendell knew little about his goal, which will live long in the memory of the 4,000 travelling fans, although Nick Owen, the Luton chairman, was not among them. Instead the broadcaster was on holiday.

Rendell said: "I didn't see it go past the goalkeeper. I just heard a big roar. I've never had a feeling like it."

Luton must now come back down to earth for another fourth-round tie - Tuesday's FA Trophy clash at Grimsby.

"As much as we would love to get to the FA Cup final, realistically it's not going to be happen," Rendell said.

"We need to enjoy the ride we're on. The Trophy's much more feasible - that's a very winnable competition for us.

"We need to go there with the right attitude and intensity."

Sutton's FA Cup run was ended by Norwich in an 8-0 win, but Luton enter the fifth-round draw capable of worrying any opposition.

Luton finalised preparations at Ipswich's training ground and Hatters manager Paul Buckle, who was a team-mate of Norwich counterpart Chris Hughton at Brentford, said: "I don't think it's quite sunk in yet. It's an incredible performance by the players.

"Norwich had a couple of good chances in the game, but you would have expected that.

"The most pleasing thing for me was that we defended very well and carried a threat going the other way.

"I'm absolutely delighted for the players and the fans were out of this world.

"We took great strength from the Wolves game, we stuck to the same plan.

"The players got it right and I want them to enjoy this."

Hughton felt his Norwich side did not deserve to exit the competition, defended his decision to make six changes and bemoaned the missed chances which ultimately proved costly.

"A big shock," Hughton said. "You have to give Luton credit. They came here with a game plan, we found it very difficult to break them down.

"The good chances we did have we weren't able to put them away.

"We pushed and pushed and they caught us on a classic counter-attack. It was a poor goal for us to concede.

"We never expected an easy game today. We knew they would come motivated, organised, but you expect to break them down at some stage.

"I think they have been fortunate, but that's cup football. Ultimately we weren't good enough to beat them today."

For Norwich, who are without a win in six Premier League matches and lost 5-0 at Liverpool last week, the chance to make amends cannot come soon enough. The Canaries host Tottenham on Wednesday.

"It's going to be a tough few days," said Hughton, who confirmed an interest in Sporting Lisbon striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel.

"We'll certainly need to be better than we were today and better than we have been of late.

"We're in a downward spiral at the moment. We need very quickly to turn that around."


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