Grant Holt belongs in the Premier League says Norwich City boss Paul Lambert
Paul Lambert believes Grant Holt has proved beyond any doubt he can cut it in the Premier League.
Holt's latest strike at top flight rivals West Brom over the weekend helped ease the Canaries into the FA Cup fifth round and took his personal tally to nine goals this season.
Norwich's captain has surpassed the 20-goal mark in both City's previous successful promotion campaigns and Lambert would not bet against him threatening that figure again, despite facing some of the best defenders in the business on a weekly basis.
'I'd love him to do 20 or more. He has done great,' said Lambert. 'He is a typical old fashioned number nine, as I have said in the past, but I think he has a bit more to his game than that. He has stepped up and he is thriving on it.
'If you look at his career he has taken knocks left, right and centre but he came from League Two to the Premier League and that must give him great satisfaction to know he is doing what he is doing.
'Most of these lads deserved an opportunity. I was never going to break it up as such and let people go who had done great for me. I wanted them to go and make names for themselves.'
Holt himself feels Norwich's impressive form in league and cup underlines the pure quality within Lambert's squad.
- 1 Norfolk village named among poshest places to live in UK
- 2 This is when thunderstorms will hit Norfolk this week
- 3 Fire crews to remain at scene of nature reserve blaze overnight
- 4 Man's surprise at finding virtually naked man asleep on car in Cromer
- 5 'Help yourself' - farmer gives away tonnes of onions damaged by heatwave
- 6 Product sold at Tesco recalled due to risk of disease-causing bacteria
- 7 Holidaymakers face further severe TUI delays from Norwich
- 8 Where you will be able to see the Red Arrows over Norfolk this week
- 9 Brother and sister found dead in home were grieving beloved father
- 10 Police catch over 20 drivers speeding in 45 minutes near fatal crash site
'If you get good quality and good players around you, which we have, I'll score goals. We're very lucky that we've got people who put them in areas and we'll score,' he said.
'When you have that, they're going to create chances and it's up to me to stick it away. I'm sure if I wasn't, he'd soon get me out of that team. He just tells you something and when he tells you, you listen.
'If you don't listen, you're out. He knows and I know what he expects from me, and when he puts me in the team he knows what he's going to get. And if I drop below that, he'll be the first to jump on me.'
Holt was withdrawn early at the Hawthorns ahead of City's Premier League trip to Sunderland tomorrow, but the skipper knows no-one is guaranteed a starting spot.
'It gives you that steel and that belief that if you're name's written on the team sheet he knows you're ready for that game and that's what he's going with,' said Holt. 'It doesn't matter if you play five minutes or 90 minutes with the gaffer, he expects the same level. If he sticks you on for 20 minutes he expects you from the start to do exactly the same job.
'When you get to the game, whichever formation he goes with, you know you've got to get ready for the challenge and its working.'