Holt is in the clear but Lambert charged

Norwich City were able to breathe a sigh of relief after captain Grant Holt had his dismissal against Reading overturned by the FA.

It was not all good news for the Canaries though as the governing body also confirmed manager Paul Lambert had been charged with improper conduct.

While Holt's successful appeal won't bring back the two points City lost in the 3-3 draw at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday, the rescinding of a three-match ban will be a big boost.

It means last season's top scorer will be available for the visit of Leeds to Carrow Road on Saturday, the trip to Derby on December 4 and – arguably most important in supporters' eyes – the East Anglian derby with Ipswich in ten days' time.

The City striker was shown a straight red card by 25-year-old referee Michael Oliver for a tackle on defender Ian Harte, shortly before half-time in Saturday's Championship encounter, with the Canaries' 3-1 up and cruising. Replays confirmed what many suspected with the naked eye; the striker's passive tackle made little contact with the Republic of Ireland international, whose reaction did not help Holt's immediate cause.

The advantage of an extra man saw the Royals pull level with an hour gone, but City held on for their third

successive draw.

Most Read

Holt's is the second red card rescinded from Oliver by the FA in the space of two weeks, after a similar dismissal of West Bromwich Albion's Pablo Ibanez at Blackpool at the start of the month.

After the match, Lambert labelled Oliver's decision 'pathetic' before questioning whether the official had the necessary experience to referee at Championship level.

The City boss also left his technical area in the last shakes of the match to check on midfielder Korey Smith, who had been left in a heap following a robust challenge from Jem Karacan. Lambert was sent to the stands by Oliver following that misdemeanor.

The FA confirmed yesterday the Scot has been charged with improper conduct, and he has until 4pm Friday to respond.

In April Lambert was fined �1,000 and handed a one-match touchline ban after comments he made to referee Eddie Ilderton following City's controversial League One defeat at Tranmere – also in front of the Sky cameras.

The City boss was warned about his future conduct at the time and missed out on City's League One crowning victory over Gillingham at Carrow Road three weeks later.

Lambert was also fined �750 after being sent to the stands in his final match in charge at Colchester, before making the switch to Carrow Road.

It remains to be seen whether Lambert will be handed a touchline suspension this and, if so, which match the Norwich manager could miss.

But speaking after Saturday's draw, Lambert felt his dismissal was unwarranted.

'All I went down for was to see if Korey was all right because his knee was sore,' said Lambert. 'I never said a word, never did anything wrong, I just went down there to make sure he was OK.

'It was the fourth official actually – I thought they were shocking, really shocking. I asked him what I was getting sent off for and he said, 'I'll tell you later', so I must be going to have a drink with him.

'I would love to know what I'm being sent off for – I'm sure he will be making that up.'