Tom Barkhuizen in right place at right time as Preston make their point at Norwich
On first viewing Paul Huntington appeared to head in Paul Gallagher’s corner 20 minutes from time to cancel out James Maddison’s first-half free-kick at Carrow Road.
MATCH REPORT: Norwich 1-1 PNEBut Barkhuizen was in the right place at the right time to flick out a left foot and grab his fourth goal of the season.
It was also PNE’s first goal from a corner this season, the only set piece strikes being two direct free-kicks from Josh Harrop.
“It’s just something we’ve been working on,” said Barkhuizen.
“I think we were the only team in the league not to have scored from a corner.
“Hunts has got a great header on it and I’ve managed to get my left foot on it and turn it in.
“It’s definitely my goal. At the time people didn’t know it was mine but I’m claiming it.
“Hunts thought I’d just glanced it in but it was a full foot. I got a pretty big touch on it.
“If it was a striker like Jordan (Hugill) he might have tried to claim it but Hunts’ job is to keep them out and mine is to score them.
“That’s what strikers want to do. They sniff four or five goals a season out in there and thankfully I’ve got on the end of one.”
Barkhuizen had seen one of his strikes chalked off earlier in the season and given to Sean Maguire after the Irishman deflected a shot home in the 2-2 draw at Fulham.
“It’s my turn to get the little nick,” said the 24-year-old.
“We’ve had a little laugh and a joke about that. Seani’s was less of a touch than mine today and he claimed that.
“I’m always happy to get on the scoresheet and I’ve chipped in with a few assists this season.
“I just need to kick on and I’d like to think I can have a really good season if I can keep playing well.”
North End, the better side on the day, had plenty of momentum after the goal but saw a bizarre sequence of events mean the game ended in farcical circumstances.
An injury to linesman Mark Jones saw Norwich fan David Thornhill pulled out of the crowd to act as an emergency fourth official after a long delay.“We didn’t really know what was going on but I think we were happy for the breather,” Barkhuizen admitted.
“There’s a lot of players who have travelled a lot this week and the extra 10-minute breather for us was good.
“It gave us a bit more energy to push on and unfortunately we couldn’t nick it at the end.
“We can’t moan about it, it’s just one of those things that happens in football.
“As players we just get on with it and fight until the final whistle whether that’s 90 minutes or 100 minutes.”
There was still time for Barkhuizen to nearly win the game for his side only for a one-on-one chance to go begging.
“It’ just plugged a bit in the pitch,” he said.
“I was expecting it to run through a bit more and as I’ve glanced towards the ‘keeper to see if he’s coming it’s just bounced off me and run through.
“Naturally in myself I’m a little bit disappointed because I thrive off moments like that.
"It’s just unlucky. It’s one of those things.
“At the end of the day we’re unbeaten in three now, we’ve turned around that pretty horrific run of form after the previous international break.
“Thankfully things are looking up and we can push on and look up the table.”