Paddy Davitt delivers his Fulham verdict after a fighting Carabao Cup exit from the Canaries.

1. Right response

When Carlos Vinicius put Fulham ahead with 12 minutes gone against a Norwich side showing nine changes from the side pummelled at Plymouth, those travelling City fans might have been forgiven for fearing the worst.

Fulham showed their hand with Marco Silva naming a home line up packed with multi-million pound talent and internationals from front to back.

But the response was everything David Wagner would have wanted. Norwich cleared their collective heads and their compact shape restricted Fulham’s threat, while laying the platform for a number of threatening counters.

Tony Springett, Sam McCallum and Hwang Ui-Jo could have levelled prior to the interval. But there was a goal to celebrate when Borja Sainz replied on his senior debut, minutes after Alex Iwobi had effectively settled this cup tie.

So no place in the fourth round. But after the horror at Home Park the far more important matter of getting the Championship show back on the road against Birmingham City at Carrow Road is now a task that can be attacked with renewed relish.

Follow up a Plymouth pummelling with another heavy defeat at Fulham, albeit for a shadow line up, and the questions would have grown louder.

But the positives outweighed the one negative. Focus on the league was the priority before this third round tie. It remains the priority.  

2. Yes, Borja                                                                        

It took the Spanish summer signing all of 12 minutes into his senior debut in English football to have those massed ranks of away fans jumping for joy behind the goal he slotted on his debut.

A slaloming run into box through the centre of the Fulham rearguard looked to have been halted by a well-timed tackle. But when Rowe retrieved the situation there was Sainz with the composure to hold off Joao Paulinha and finish past Marek Rodak from seven yards out.

The 22-year-old will have savoured that feeling. All the excitement that accompanied his astute signing, after City profited from a relegation release clause following a tilt at the Turkish Super Lig that brought an impressive number of goals and assists, was put on hold when he damaged ankle ligaments in his second training session.

But the Championship is the proverbial marathon, and Wagner has patiently eased him into frontline service with two recent development outings.

Sainz looks a dynamic, direct option in an area of the pitch where certainly since the injury exits of Josh Sargent and Ashley Barnes, Norwich have looked one-dimensional.

With Rowe’s bright start fading, along with the Canaries in the last few games, the hope now is Sainz can provide a catalyst, a spark and probably the other side of the upcoming international break really prove himself to be a key figure in the quest for league progress.

Judging by the way he launched himself into a tackle on Paulinha late on he has already adapted to the physical side of his brief.

3. Young guns

For 71 minutes of the cup tie this was going to be a homage to Kellen Fisher’s maturity and comfort in such exalted company; given the multi-million pound footballers in Fulham white.

The 19-year-old must have felt a long way from the National League when he had Brazilian international and two-time Premier League title winner Willian squaring him up in a vibrant start from the Cottagers.

The teenager cut out five crosses in the opening 10 minutes down his right flank from either Willian or Fode Ballo-Toure.

The unfazed Fisher then signalled his intent 10 minutes in with a crunching challenge on Ballo-Toure, that earned a verbal rebuke from the referee.

But such early action underlined again this is a player who is comfortable with the meteoric strides he has made in his short career. Wagner included Fisher’s pre-season impact in the reasoning behind his decision to sanction a permanent move to Plymouth for Bali Mumba.

In the Championship he has had to defer to Jack Stacey but this was a third League Cup start. There was one blemish in the 41st minute, when he over-played on the edge of his own area to present Paulinha with the ball but Ben Gibson bailed him out.

Another heavy touch two minutes later in midfield was pounced upon by Willian. But it was not third time lucky when he ran into traffic just outside his own area and into a Fulham pincer.

Alex Iwobi slotted a low right footed shot into the bottom corner from the edge of the area, and Fisher thrust his hands to his head in horror.

But these are the levels, and Fisher looks a quick learner. He will now know what is required when he is in this company again.

4. Renaissance man

Long odds may have been sought on Przemyslaw Placheta emerging as a frontline option for Norwich City after a rather forgettable Canaries’ career.

A proposed season long loan stint to Birmingham City this time last year signalled he was certainly not in Dean Smith’s plans. Wagner may have shared the same opinion had the Polish international not responded to his simple challenge in pre-season.

The shin-related problems that curtailed his Blues’ loan, and ruled him out of the German’s opening months in charge, shoved all the chips into a defining close season.

Placheta delivered. Interestingly there was also that experiment as a new look left-sided defensive option, which came to pass in the Championship home win over Stoke City, when he deputised for Dimi Giannoulis for the final 30 minutes.

But this cup competition has helped convince those perhaps on the outside looking in Wagner may be onto something.

Placheta was the difference with a coolly-taken match-winner at Bristol City. He also caught the eye at Craven Cottage. Deployed in a more familiar left wing role it was his pace and thrust that carved out the best chance of the first half for Tony Springett, who criminally failed to the hit the target.

There was another cross that Issa Diop had to slice behind and a surge that brought the corner for Sam McCallum’s flying header clutched by Rodak. Placheta’s bite was evident in the yellow card for a clumsy rather than malicious challenge on Harry Wilson.

But he was a presence and a threat. How it develops from here is intriguing.

In forward areas there is the likes of Rowe and fit-again Sainz to jostle with alongside Onel Hernandez. Placheta made way for Sainz just past the hour mark. But he now feels like a live contender in this winger debate.