Defender Jamal Lewis boosted Norwich City’s chances of Premier League survival when he hit a sensational winner in the Canaries 1-0 win over Leicester City at Carrow Road on Friday evening.
The 22-year-old scored his first-ever goal in the top flight when he hit a sweet left-footed volley low into the corner of the net with twenty minutes left on the clock to leave bottom-placed City now just six points from safety.
“I'm so glad that I finally scored at Carrow Road,” admitted Lewis, who now becomes the 36th Northern Ireland player to score in the Premier League. “Obviously every player wants to score in front of their home crowd.
“It was a surreal feeling but there were still 20 minutes to go so I was trying to stay switched on in my defensive head, defend well and keep the boys at a high level, so it was good.
“I saw Max (Aarons) bombing,” added the talented left-back, “he put the ball in the box and I was thinking if I got there late I could get on to it and luckily the touch was good on my chest.
“It just sat perfectly and I thought if I cut across this it could test the keeper and obviously I got the technique perfect and a great finish.”
Elsewhere in the Premier League, it was also a memorable day for defender Craig Cathcart who was part of the Watford team that ended Liverpool’s amazing 44 game unbeaten league run following their 3-0 victory over the Champions-elect at Vicarage Road.
In the Championship, Stuart Dallas’ chances of becoming a Premier League player next season increased as Leeds United cruised to a comfortable 4-0 success at Grant McCann’s Hull City to leave them just one point behind leaders West Bromwich Albion.
Meanwhile, in League One, under-21 International Danny Amos was handed his first league start of the season as Doncaster Rovers defeated promotion hopefuls Wycombe Wanderers 3-1, while Mark Sykes started for Oxford United who moved into one of the play-off places after their 2-1 home win over bottom of the table Southend United.
On the goalscoring front, under-19 International striker Liam Smyth scored in injury time as Braintree Town recorded a 2-0 home win over Bath City.
Smyth, who is currently on-loan at the Essex-based side from Stevenage, has now scored three goals in eight games since his arrival at the National League South outfit in January.
It was the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup at the weekend and Hearts set up a semi-final tie against their Edinburgh rivals Hibernian after beating Steven Gerrard’s Rangers 1-0 at Tynecastle.
Defender Michael Smith and striker Conor Washington both started the game while Liam Boyce, who was still recovering from injury, came on as a late substitute.
Speaking after the contest Washington said: “Rangers had a tough week being away in Europe on Wednesday night so we wanted to use the first five or 10 minutes to turn them, get them facing their own goal and let them know they are in a game.
“We managed to do that and that set the tone for the game.”
Winger Matty Kennedy provided an assist for Aberdeen’s opening goal in the 2-0 victory at St Mirren to set up a semi-final encounter with holders Celtic at Hampden Park next month.
There were also assists at the weekend for former Ards player Josh Doherty (Crawley Town) and Portsmouth’s on-loan midfielder Cameron McGeehan.