Norwich City captain Grant Holt - We’re not safe yet

Grant Holt believes playing against the Premier League's elite brings the best out of him and his te

Grant Holt believes playing against the Premier League's elite brings the best out of him and his team-mates. - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City captain Grant Holt insists the Canaries still aren’t safe from the Premier League trapdoor.

City’s late show against Everton fluffed up the club’s cushion to eight points between themselves and the relegation zone but Holt believes there is still plenty of work to be done.

Before Saturday’s victory, City had gone nine matches without a win in the league and Holt knows a similar run could see those fears of entering the dreaded drop zone return.

When asked if City are now virtually safe, Holt replied: “I don’t think so. We know what this league is like. You can easily go four or five games without getting a win but we are confident.

“We’ve done well in the last few weeks and we will move on to Man U and some tough home games coming up.”

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Holt acknowledges his goal against Everton has given City some breathing space before they go to champions-in-waiting, Manchester United, on Saturday.

As City picked up maximum points the likes of QPR, Aston Villa and Reading all faltered – news that went down particularly well in the Carrow Road dressing room.

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“When you’re on there you don’t realise the relevance of the result,” he said. “When you come off you realise just how big it is. I think that takes us to an eight-point cushion so we will go away happy.

“We will go to Man U next week where no-one expects us to get anything and we will do what we do best and try to upset the odds.”

Norwich are of course one of the few teams with the chance to ‘double’ United after Anthony Pilkington’s goal gave them a famous win over Sir Alex Ferguson’s side back in November.

While the odds will be stacked against City achieving a similar feat, Holt believes playing against the Premier League’s elite brings the best out of him and his team-mates.

“We will just do what we do – wherever we go we always put in a performance to try and take it,” he said.

“Normally against the bigger boys we do ok. We work hard as a unit and hopefully we can do that next week.”

Holt is likely to return to a lone striking role on Saturday after having first Luciano Becchio and then Kei Kamara for company against Everton.

The City skipper has often had to sacrifice his goal threat this season in manager Chris Hughton’s preferred 4-2-3-1 formation but Holt insists he is happy with whatever system the Canaries’ boss deploys.

“It’s just horses for courses – whatever the manager decides to do you’ve just got to run with it,” he said.

“Obviously it’s different to have that type of player (a second striker) – you can run off and do other bits and bobs. I enjoy it but if he goes back to 4-4-1-1 next week I will enjoy that as well.

“You’ve just got to do a job for the team – thankfully we played 4-4-2 (against Everton) and got the points.”

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