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Hughton hoping to keep hold of Holt

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07 Jun 2012 20:17:47

Hughton hoping to keep hold of Holt

New Norwich manager Chris Hughton has made it his first mission to keep hold of wantaway captain Grant Holt.

The former Birmingham boss was appointed as Paul Lambert's replace at Carrow Road after agreeing a three-year contract with the Canaries. The 53-year-old takes charge of the club days after Holt had a transfer request rejected by the board, who are determined to retain their top goalscorer.

"He is a quality player, no doubt about that," Hughton said of the 31-year-old, who scored 17 goals in the top flight last term. "With his record - to score the goals he did last season - there wouldn't be any manager coming in who wouldn't want to keep a player of that quality."

Hughton added: "I've only just come through the door a few minutes ago so I have not had the opportunity to speak with him but that will be one of the priorities.

"He is contracted to this club. He won player of the season for the last three seasons so I absolutely would like him here."

Norwich chief executive David McNally was equally resolute about the club's stance in regards to Holt's future.

"We want him to stay," he said. "He is our captain and has been our top scorer for the last three years. He is not for sale and we would not encourage anyone to bid for him"

McNally also revealed that Hughton was the only candidate interviewed for the post vacated by Lambert's move to Aston Villa.

He said: "We looked at the UK and international market, and had a detailed look at who was available and who wasn't and we wanted to try to find the person who could take us forward. This is one of the best times in the club's history financially so we think the job is attractive to managers around the world.

"We thought it was key to have top-league experience, preferably in the Premier League and at the end of it all we looked at the names and Chris stood out as number one candidate. We recognised that unanimously.


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