Norwich City-Everton Preview
LONDON (SE) - Norwich City feel they're headed in the right direction.
Despite Everton's position in the Premier League, manager David Moyes isn't likely to feel the same way about his club.
The Canaries look to remain unbeaten for a sixth league match in a row Saturday when they visit Everton, who will be without their top scorer.
Norwich City (3-5-4) are tied with Newcastle for 12th in the table, but sitting just three points back of Tottenham in eighth.
The Canaries' recent results are lending to the belief that they can continue climbing the standings.
They're outscoring opponents 6-2 during a 4-2-0 stretch, during which they've pulled off upset wins of Arsenal and Manchester United in league play and Tottenham in the Capital One Cup.
The latest victory was a 1-0 stunner against United last weekend, when Anthony Pilkington headed home a cross from Javier Garrido in the 60th minute.
"It doesn't come any better (than scoring the winner against Manchester United), they're a massive, massive club, and probably the biggest in the world, so to get the three points against them is great," Pilkington told the team's official website. "We're unbeaten and it's another clean sheet. We're all working hard to go in the right direction, and thankfully we're picking up points now.
"The results recently show what we're all about. We knew we had a great squad and we could win games and that's what we're doing now. (Manager Chris Hughton) has told us to believe in ourselves and we are."
That belief has Norwich playing superb defensive football in front of goalkeeper John Ruddy, who has made 11 saves to keep three consecutive clean sheets.
Offensively, Norwich's nine league goals are spread between seven players with Grant Holt leading the way with three. The forward, though, hasn't scored in five matches since tallying early in a 1-0 victory over the Gunners on Oct. 20.
Now, the Canaries will try to take advantage of fifth-place Everton (5-5-2), who have won once in six matches (1-4-1) and will be without Marouane Fellaini.
Fellaini, Everton's leader with six league goals, is serving a one-match ban after receiving his fifth yellow card in last weekend's 2-1 defeat at Reading.
The defeat drew the ire of Moyes, especially after the Toffees squandered an early lead and gave up the winning goal on a penalty with 11 minutes to play.
"I'm as angry as I've ever been after a game," Moyes told the team's official website. "I'm not angry with the officials, I'm angry with my team.
"We were outstanding in the first half, but we didn't punish them. We left the door ajar, and let them in."
With Fellaini out, the scoring onus may be put on Nikica Jelavic, second on the club with five goals. However, the Croatian forward has scored only once in his last five matches, and came up empty on three shots against Reading.
Jelavic was outstanding in his only career meeting with Norwich, doing all of the Everton scoring in a 2-2 draw at Carrow Road on April 7.
The teams also played to a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park on Dec. 17, when Holt's first-half goal was cancelled out by Leon Osman's with nine minutes to play.