Gary Hooper is itching for a Norwich City start

Gary Hooper is itching to get back into the starting line up at Norwich City. Picture by Paul Cheste

Gary Hooper is itching to get back into the starting line up at Norwich City. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City boss Neil Adams insists Gary Hooper will get his chance to bolster the Canaries' Championship promotion push.

Hooper has yet to start a league game this season after a calf injury but Adams is convinced the 26-year-old's prolific goalscoring record underlines why he is a major asset.

'We've had quite a few good chats with Gary and the pleasing thing is he is sharper now, he is up to a tempo and a speed I didn't think he was quite at, given he was out for six or seven weeks with an injury,' said Adams. 'I understand his frustrations and I have told him that. He wants to play, he wants to compete for a place in the side and we have other strikers here who, although they are not scoring goals at the minute, have done reasonably well. In the grand scheme of things Cameron (Jerome) and Lewis (Grabban) have done well. It hasn't happened for them in the last five games in terms of goals and Gary is a goalscorer. It is about who can hurt the opposition. He is a big part of what we are about and I want him here.'

The ex-Celtic striker was reportedly the subject of a loan enquiry from his old mentor Neil Lennon, who brings Bolton to Carrow Road for Friday's televised duel.

'He won't be going on loan. We need him here,' said Adams. 'Gary Hooper is not number four in a pecking order. I don't see him like that.

'He is here competing with the other strikers for a place in the team. In terms of him going out and scoring goals and playing games elsewhere, I would let a player out if we felt they are not going to be needed.

'The fact I said to Gary I want you here suggests he is needed. We have plenty of calls for all our players, Gary, amongst others. Do I want Gary to go out on loan? No.'

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