Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Chris Hughton insists Grant Holt’s value to Norwich City should be measured in more than goals.
Holt’s injury return in the goalless shutout against Newcastle was a major boost for the club’s Premier League survival bid ahead of this weekend’s testing trip to Liverpool.
Holt famously scored in front of the Kop at Anfield last season in a stirring 1-1 league draw during a successful 15-goal top flight debut. The Cumbrian has plundered four league goals this time around leading the line in a solo front-running role, but Hughton is in no doubt Holt can hit the goal trail over the remaining months of this season.
“Yes, of course he can,” he said. “I think in the way we’ve played with Wes (Hoolahan) just playing off the front, there’s perhaps been a little bit more demand on him in his general game as opposed to just goalscoring. Probably this season he’s had to sacrifice a little bit of what he’s had here before, for the team, but he doesn’t mind doing that as long as we’re in every game, as long as we have a chance of winning games.
“First and foremost it’s been about getting him back fit. He is a big player for us and for Grant, it’s not just about his goals. He’s a big player for us in more ways than one, so certainly we need to get him back fit, but it’s about a team providing opportunities for any striker that plays and Grant would be no different.”
Hughton continues to be linked with fresh transfer window striking talent to address City’s relative shortfall in front of goal.
“We’re looking to strengthen, full stop,” he said. “It’s quite obvious that we would like to score more goals but it’s mostly about accumulating points and winning games, however you do that. We will endeavour in this window to strengthen the squad but it’s not always easy.
“It’s a very difficult time to bring players in. You have to make sure you’re bringing in better and that anybody you bring in can actually add to the squad, to the quality of the squad. Of course, this time of the year any players that you’re interested in you’re going to be quoted prices that are perhaps more than their values.”
Hughton again reiterated after Newcastle City’s due diligence never stops to try and identify potential additions at the right price.
“You see who’s available, you see what’s within your budget and you see if it’s right.” he said. “Now on most occasions it’s not because they are players who have contracts at other clubs and maybe the only way they’re going to let them go is for a bigger amount of money than the player’s worth. There are all sorts of connotations. Also clubs at this stage don’t want to let players go, so these are the things you experience, but it’s no different for us than for any other club.
“We are working hard and that is the same as everybody – the same as we were doing one, two or three weeks ago. Historically if you look at this period of time most of the work seems to be done in that last ten days. It is very difficult to bring in players because the prices are going to be inflated. You don’t just want additions to the squad, you want them to improve the team.”