No room for sentiment as Holt returns home

Paddy Davitt Norwich City talisman Grant Holt ruled out any divided loyalties as he prepared to spearhead the Canaries' attack today at boyhood club Carlisle.The 28-year-old striker grew up within a couple of miles of Brunton Park in the Harraby area of the Cumbrian town but never made the breakthrough at United.

Paddy Davitt

Norwich City talisman Grant Holt ruled out any divided loyalties as he prepared to spearhead the Canaries' attack today at boyhood club Carlisle.

The 28-year-old striker grew up within a couple of miles of Brunton Park in the Harraby area of the Cumbrian town but never made the breakthrough at United.

Holt was forced to ply his trade in local non-league circles at Barrow, Workington and Halifax before a stint in Singapore paved the way for his big chance at Sheffield Wednesday.


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The rest is history. Holt admits performing in front of family and friends this afternoon is extra special but the Canaries' skipper wants only one thing from his homecoming - victory.

“I might get a chance to see a few of them,” he said. “I'm sure they'll be in the crowd giving us a bit of stick when I'm warming up, but that's part and parcel of football and I'm just looking forward to going up there, doing my job and getting three points. We're doing well at the moment. I think winning games gives you that belief. Wins always build that momentum. It's a lot easier when you're winning than when you're losing and we know we've got a squad good enough and we've got the belief to go on now, get a run. We know we weren't happy with the situation we were in three of four weeks ago, but now it's looking a lot rosier, we've got games coming up which are big - but we know we can win.”

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Holt insisted it would take more than a minor calf injury to rule him out of a special date in his footballing calendar.

“It was just a knock and I've been with the physios this week trying to get it down,” he said. “Everything's fine. There's been a few knocks but I think that comes with the way we're playing at the moment. The lads are getting stuck in and working hard for the team to perform, and I'm sure the lads that are on the treatment table will be fighting to get off it for the weekend.”

Paul Lambert's side pummelled Orient and Bristol Rovers at Carrow Road in recent weeks. Now Holt is urging City to take that promotion form on the road.

“We want three points anywhere, it doesn't matter if it's home or away, any game is just as important,” said Holt. “But we know we've been away from home, had good performances and not got what we've deserved really. So hopefully we can go up there, and then Leeds the week after, and finally get what we deserve on the road. We have picked points up on the road, it's just a case that we haven't been getting wins.

“If you look at the Gillingham game in the league, for 30 minutes we absolutely battered them, the goalie gets sent off, the decision goes against us. But we don't give up, were 1-0 down, we come back to 1-1 and we should've won it at the end. That shows the desire and the team spirit we've got and I'm sure Carlisle won't be looking forward to us going up there.”

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