Hughton hails Becchio capture

Manager Chris Hughton is confident new Norwich striker Luciano Becchio can offer his team "something different".

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Luciano Becchio: Has joined Norwich

Luciano Becchio: Has joined Norwich

Manager Chris Hughton is confident new Norwich striker Luciano Becchio can offer his team "something different" as they look to avoid being dragged into a battle for Barclays Premier League survival.

The Canaries head to bottom club QPR on Saturday some seven points clear of the drop zone, but without a league win since December 15.

Argentinian forward Becchio - who scored 19 goals for Leeds this season and arrived as part of a swap deal for Wales international Steve Morison - will provide much-needed back-up for captain Grant Holt, and could well be used as an impact player from the bench on Saturday.

"Becchio is a player in good form this season, which is important," Hughton told a press conference.

"You want someone who is going to hit the ground running and give us something, whether it is starting or on the bench."

Norwich also moved to bring in Kei Kamara on loan from Major League Soccer club Sporting Kansas City, but the Sierra Leone forward is still waiting for international clearance and will not feature this weekend.

Hughton confirmed the Canaries had tabled several "substantial bids" for Celtic frontman Gary Hooper, all of which were rebuffed by the Scottish Premier League side, who are said to have last night slapped a £10million price-tag on their prized-asset.

"We did put bids in and they were substantial bids, certainly by the levels of this football club," said Hughton.

"All the conversations we had with Celtic were good, amicable conversations, but it was very clear he is a player who they had a big valuation of and did not want to lose."

QPR, meanwhile, broke their transfer record to bring in former Blackburn centre-back Christopher Samba having already splashed out some £8million for striker Loic Remy earlier in the window.

Should Harry Redknapp's men somehow manage to avoid relegation, it would be money well spent.

Norwich head to Loftus Road on the back of a 1-1 draw with Tottenham, which went some way to restoring confidence after the 5-0 mauling at Liverpool had made it five defeats from six Premier League games.

Hughton knows Norwich must be on their guard tomorrow.

"QPR are in good form and are confident, they have brought in some very good quality players," he said.

"They had an effective system up against Manchester City.

"Whether they see this as a home game which is winnable, perhaps their tactics will be a bit different.

"Every three points for us are valuable, which is the same for QPR.

"We need to go into the game with the same spirit and determination as we had against Spurs."

Despite Norwich's alarming slump, Hughton remains confident they can recapture the consistency which saw his side recover from an appalling start to the season and embark upon an 11-game unbeaten league run which included wins over Arsenal and Manchester United.

"We know where we are - it is difficult for us to sustain the form we showed a few months ago right the way through the season, so you are going to have you lows, you have to accept it and it is how you respond," he said.

"It was a performance against Spurs like which we had showed before the dip, so that is encouraging.

"We just need to pick up points where we can now, with strong performances in every game."

England keeper John Ruddy continues his rehabilitation from a thigh operation, and Hughton maintained the Canaries number one must not be rushed back into action.

He said: "John is on track and is in very good shape, but it is one which has to take its course.

"Of course you would like to have him back as quickly as possible, but we have to react to what is good medical advice and make sure his rehab is exactly how it should be."


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