Norwich City: How the Canaries' International Stars Fared This Week
Domestic football took a back seat this week as Premier League players jetted off around the globe to represent their countries in crucial World Cup qualifying fixtures.
Norwich City were no exception, with a large section of the squad called up by their respective nations.
With no injuries reported, attention will now turn towards Saturday's clash with Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane as the Canaries look to build on a solid start to the season.
But until then, here's a look at how City's international stars performed for their national sides.
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Country: Republic of Ireland
Minutes Played: 16 mins (v Sweden), 73 mins (v Austria)
On a personal level, it was a very satisfying week for Norwich City winger Anthony Pilkington, with the 25-year-old finally making his first two appearances for the Republic of Ireland after being forced to withdraw from several previous squads.
In fact, it was a case of sixth time lucky for Pilkington, who must have feared that the string of withdrawals would inevitably lead to question marks over his dedication to the Irish cause.
Nonetheless, newly sacked manager Giovanni Trapattoni always insisted that Pilkington remained part of his plans, and the Italian had no hesitation in giving the Canaries wide man his chance to shine in what turned out to be his final two games in charge.
Pilkington produced a lively cameo appearance from the substitutes bench in Friday's home defeat to Sweden, before being handed the opportunity to impress from the off in Tuesday's following fixture away to Austria.
Against the Austrians, Pilkington grew into the game after a quiet start and had one of Ireland's better chances when he fired into the side-netting towards the end of the first-half.
However, Pilkington has yet to start a Premier League game for Norwich City this season due to an ongoing knee injury, and that lack of match fitness showed in the second half as he began to tire, and Ireland's chances of making the World Cup evaporated.
Despite this, Pilkington showed enough to suggest that he will go onto enjoy a long career on the international stage, but he may be disappointed to learn of Trapattoni's dismissal after the faith that was shown in him by the veteran coach.
Johan Elmander and Martin Olsson
Super Swede: Johan Elmander helped Sweden to a 2-1 victory over the Republic of Ireland in Dublin
Minutes Played (Elmander): 90 + 2 mins (v Republic of Ireland), 81 mins (v Kazakhstan)
Minutes Played (Olsson): Full 90 mins (v Republic of Ireland), Full 90 mins (v Kazakhstan)
With the Republic of Ireland all but out of the running for qualification from Group C, Sweden are now firmly in the driving seat for a spot in the play-offs after successive away victories sent them three points clear of third-placed Austria.
Two Norwich City stars in the shape of Johan Elmander and Martin Olsson both played pivotal roles in a successful week for Sweden, and, from a selfish point of view, both players managed to get useful minutes under their belts.
Elmander was Sweden's hero in Dublin on Friday night as his thunderous header cancelled out Robbie Keane's opener for the Irish, and the way in which he dismissed the ball into the back of the net will give plenty of reason for optimism for Canaries fans everywhere.
There was more to his performance than just his goal though, with his terrific work rate and link-up play providing the perfect foil for the talents of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The striker put in another good shift against Kazakhstan on Tuesday as Sweden recorded a 1-0 win, and the fact that Elmander is still the first choice to partner Ibrahimović at the age of 32 is testament to the quality of performances that he is still producing.
In contrast, Martin Olsson will have been delighted to have played every minute of both fixtures, and that match practice will surely hold him in good stead in his quest to oust Javier Garrido from the Canaries starting XI in the coming weeks.
Russell Martin, Steven Whittaker and Robert Snodgrass
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Minutes Played (Martin): Full 90 mins (v Belgium), Full 90 mins (v Macedonia)
Minutes Played (Whittaker): Full 90 mins (v Belgium), 80 mins (v Macedonia)
Minutes Played (Snodgrass): 57 mins (v Belgium), Suspended (v Macedonia)
Norwich City's Scottish contingent enjoyed a relatively successful week with the victory over Macedonia managing to haul the Scots off the bottom of Group A.
Russell Martin in particular will be more than satisfied with his performances in the two fixtures as his partnership with Blackburn's Grant Hanley in the centre of defence continues to blossom.
The pair managed to deal with a formidable Belgium strike force reasonably comfortably at Hampden Park, and there is no shame in conceding two goals to a team that is now among the very best in Europe.
As for Steven Whittaker, his occasional defensive deficiencies were exposed by the Belgians for Steven Defour's opening goal on Friday night, with a poor touch gifting the opposition possession before his failure to subsequently close down Kevin De Bruyne allowed the Chelsea man to pick out the arriving Defour.
However, Whittaker's strengths have always been going forward, and he once again provided a good attacking outlet for the Scots on the left hand side, despite being asked to play out of position.
After the high standards set last season, Snodgrass is slightly struggling to replicate that form this time out, but with the quality that he possesses it will surely be a matter of time before he is back to his best.
As usual, Snodgrass' commitment against the Belgians wasn't in question, but it was just one of those evenings where nothing seemed to come off, and he was replaced after 57 minutes by Watford's Ikechi Anya.
Best of the Rest
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It was similar story for Wes Hoolahan, who you suspect won't be shedding many tears over the exit of Giovanni Trapattoni after being consistently ignored during the Italian's reign. Hoolahan was once again powerless to do anything about Ireland's latest defeats to Sweden and Austria after being left on the bench for both fixtures.
Last but not least, Nathan Redmond continued his fine start to the season in the opening two fixtures of the England under-21s European Championship qualifying campaign.