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We'll cope without Holt, insists Lambert

PUBLISHED: 11:42 12 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:37 02 July 2010

Norwich City will have to do without their talismanic skipper Grant Holt for the next two matches. Picture: Bill Smith

Norwich City will have to do without their talismanic skipper Grant Holt for the next two matches. Picture: Bill Smith

City boss Paul Lambert believes his players will cope with the absence of skipper Grant Holt in this week's two trips to the capital. Holt collected his 10th yellow card of the season for deliberate handball in the 1-1 draw at home to MK Dons and will be suspended for tomorrow's game at relegation-threatened Leyton Orient and Saturday's visit to promotion-chasing Charlton.

City boss Paul Lambert believes his players will cope with the absence of skipper Grant Holt in this week's two trips to the capital.

Holt collected his 10th yellow card of the season for deliberate handball in the 1-1 draw at home to MK Dons and will be suspended for tomorrow's game at relegation-threatened Leyton Orient and Saturday's visit to promotion-chasing Charlton.

Had the Canaries' top scorer escaped a booking on Saturday, he would have been free from a ban for the rest of the season, barring a red card. Instead, the caution by referee Kevin Friend means he is suspended for the third time this term.

"He booked him for hand-ball but he got nudged," argued Lambert - but he insisted Holt's ban would not derail his team's bid to clinch promotion.

"It won't. The lads that will come in will do great," he said.

Lambert was amazed City were not awarded a penalty for Aaron Wilbraham's handball in the second half, when they still trailed 1-0 to the same player's first-half goal. "It wouldn't look out of place in the NBA, dear oh dear," said Lambert, making a basketball comparison. "Michael Jordan couldn't do any better than that. His hand was about nine feet up in the air.

"It's incredible how he's not seen that. The fourth official said from where we were standing that it was a penalty, and it was. Everybody in the ground saw it. The only thing he didn't do was catch it."

The City boss was delighted with the performance, however, and said he never lost hope that they would get at least a point, eventually secured by Chris Martin's last-minute equaliser.

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