Never mind the gap, says City striker
David Cuffley Striker Grant Holt is undaunted by the 10-point gap that exists between Norwich City and the leading pair in League One, insisting: “We'll just get on with our own jobs.
Striker Grant Holt is undaunted by the 10-point gap that exists between Norwich City and the leading pair in League One, insisting: “We'll just get on with our own jobs.”
With only six matches played, the Canaries are already well adrift of much-fancied Charlton and Leeds, both of whom have 100 per cent records.
That gap could be 13 points by Saturday night with Paul Lambert's team sidelined for a further 48 hours until their televised trip to Milton Keynes Dons on Monday night.
But the 28-year-old Holt knows from bitter experience that getting a flying start is no guarantee of staying at the top, as Nottingham Forest discovered in League One three seasons ago, when they started like an express train but finished fourth before losing to Yeovil in the play-off semi-finals.
He said: “I was in the same position at Nottingham Forest. We had a team that should never have been in that league and at Christmas we were 10 points clear and that year we ended up missing out and getting beaten in the play-offs, so you can never tell.
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“You'd take that lead if you could get it but we haven't. I think it's something you don't really bother about. You've just got to get on with it. We'll just worry about our own jobs.
“We want to win the league, failing that be runners-up, or failing that you go up by the play-offs. I think it's only a matter of time before we get a run together where we're winning consistently. You can see in the last couple of weeks we're gelling as a team and as a squad and I think there are good things to come.”
It is City's stated intention to make an immediate return to the Championship, but their bid for three successive league victories was thwarted by Walsall in a dull goalless draw at Carrow Road on Saturday, when defender Michael Nelson had a goal disallowed for what referee Russell Booth believed was an infringement by Holt.
“I don't know what he's seen, but it was disappointing,” said Holt. “For us it was a clear goal and I think if we'd scored we'd have gone on to get another and finish the game off but that wasn't meant to be.
“It's always disappointing when you don't win, but we got a point and let the run continue. We haven't been beaten under the new manager, so we've just got to look at positives. It's gone now, you take a point and you don't know how crucial that point could be in six months' time.
“We knew Walsall would come here, sit back, defend and try to get a point and that's exactly what they did.
“I don't think we played as well as we know we can and we've got to right that next week.
“It's a bit different for us going to MK Dons, they're at home, they've got expectations. They will have to come out and play and, as we've seen, if teams have to come out and try to get goals against us they can get hurt. We know how good we are on the counter-attack and I hope it will work to our advantage.”
Charlton will be next at Carrow Road on Saturday week for the first meeting between the two clubs since the 4-2 defeat at The Valley that marked City's farewell to the Championship.
“Charlton are flying at the moment and they'll come here with all the confidence in the world. But we all know we've got a good enough squad to compete with anyone and I'm sure as the season goes on we'll get better and better.”
Meanwhile, the absence of a midweek match has given City a full nine days between games.
“We've had a lot of games the last few weeks and training's been quite intense so it gives you the opportunity to get the legs back a little bit,” said Holt. “We were a little bit tired at the weekend and it gives us a couple of days to relax then work on little bits and bobs and I think it will do us the world of good.”