sport news Norwich 2-2 Stoke: Canaries twice surrender the lead

Stoke 2-2 Norwich: Canaries twice surrender the lead as they are made to wait for Premier League promotion Onel Hernandez scored in 24th minute to hand Daniel Farke's side the lead   The winger beat Jack Butland with a powerful low drive at the Bet365 stadium Defender Ashley Williams hauled Stoke level with a powerful header    Teemu Pukki put Norwich ahead for three minutes until Thomas Edwards struck

By Laurie Whitwell for MailOnline

Published: 17:05 BST, 22 April 2019 | Updated: 17:09 BST, 22 April 2019

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Norwich are edging closer to the Premier League but this fourth draw in a row must feel like Chinese water torture for everyone decked in yellow.

It still seems inevitable they will end their three-year exile from the top-flight – and should Leeds lose at Brentford on Monday evening promotion would be effectively guaranteed – yet the drip, drip, drip, drip of one point at a time is an agonising way to do it.

That certainly appeared the feeling among a number of Norwich players who fell to the turf at the final whistle, exhausted from their efforts and deflated that a victory twice in their grasp slipped away.

Onel Hernandez fires home inside the penalty area to give Norwich the lead over Stoke

Onel Hernandez fires home inside the penalty area to give Norwich the lead over Stoke 

Ashley Williams equalised with a header from a corner at the start of the second half

Ashley Williams equalised with a header from a corner at the start of the second half

As they walked off their fans reminded them they are top of the league but the gap to Sheffield United is now three points. Leeds can reach the same total by winning at Griffin Park but should they lose, Norwich’s goal-difference advantage of eight will widen and put Daniel Farke’s side on the brink.

Stoke could have taken the lead in the 11th minute but Sam Clucas sent his free header from Tom Edwards’ cross over and from there Norwich imposed their quality in measured style.

Emiliano Buendia was back from suspension and his free-kick from deep created their first chance. The ball flicked on off Ashley Williams to find Teemu Pukki in space for a diving header, but Jack Butland spread

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