sport

Goal drought doesn't worry Holt

Norwich captain Grant Holt accepts he has become more "isolated" in attack this season, but will get on with it for the good of the team.

The Canaries battled to a goalless draw on Saturday at QPR, where Holt again had few chances to add to his four goals.

However, the veteran former Shrewsbury frontman - who helped spearhead Norwich's meteoric rise from League One back up to the Premier League - is content to put a shift in for the greater good as Chris Hughton's squad look to steer clear of being dragged into the relegation dogfight.

"Everyone is aware I have to adapt the way I have played this year with the new manager and maybe not getting as many chances as I like, but you have to get on with it," said Holt, whose 17 goals last season had brought calls for a place in the England squad.

"It is never about me, or how many goals I score, it's what I do for the team.

"You have to do a job which the manager and the team is asking you to do, it is a lot more isolated than I want, but you get on with it.

"The lads know what I do for the team and I am happy with that."

Hughton moved to strengthen his attacking options during the January transfer window, handing a debut to Luciano Becchio for the closing stages on Saturday, while international clearance on a loan deal for Sierra Leone forward Kei Kamara from Major League Soccer club Sporting Kansas City should come through next week ahead of the Fulham game.

Norwich also had several bids for Celtic striker Gary Hooper turned down.

Holt, though, welcomed the challenge of competition for places.

"It doesn't bother me who the manager brings in. As long as we stay up, that is the main aim," said the 31-year-old former tyre fitter, who handed in a shock transfer request last summer before agreeing a contract extension.

"People come and go at this club but, for some reason, I am still here so I must be doing something right.

"I have just to continue doing what I do."

Holt, often deployed as a lone frontman, added: "Becchio is a good player, is aggressive, good in the air and he is competition - and that is what we will thrive on.

"I am sure the manager will play us together if needs be. If not, well that is just football and you have to get on with it.

"You look at it as the greater good for the club to try to stay in the division, which is massive for us."

Holt had plenty to say at the head of the frontline on Saturday, often berating his team-mates when attacks broke down.

Hughton has no problems with such commitment to the cause.

"That's Grant," he said. "It has been a little bit more difficult for Grant this season. Fair play to him, because the system we play has at times isolated him a little bit.

"He has had to work a little bit more for the team. Previously he was used to playing with two up front and he could share the load a little bit.

"We are full of admiration for the job that he is doing, but yes of course he needs help and options particularly at this stage of the season.

"There is never any harm with competition in any position and I think particularly in the striking positions.

"It is one where you are going to take a striker off after 70 minutes to get a little bit of freshness, and I think he accepts that."

Despite still not having won in the Premier League since December 15, the Canaries - who were unbeaten over 11 matches from the end of October - remain seven points clear of trouble.

Hughton, though, knows there will continue to be little margins for error over the closing four months of the campaign.

"The first thing once you have played your game is you want to know is the other results, but we want to take care of our own business," he said.

"You just hope you can keep that gap between ourselves and the teams below."