Huddersfield Town loan striker Grant Holt is guaranteed a great reception when he returns to Norwich City on Saturday.
That’s the view of Canaries fan and Supporters Trust stalwart Robin Sainty.
Holt fired in 78 goals in 168 games for Norwich between 2009, when he was signed for £400,000 from Shrewsbury Town, and 2013, when he was sold to Wigan Athletic for £2m.
“He’s a legend in these parts,” said Sainty.
“Grant was incredibly popular with the fans, both because of his playing style and attitude and the fact that his arrival helped spark an upturn in our fortunes.
“Having been in the Premier League four years earlier, we had slipped into League I by the time Grant was signed.
“We won two successive promotions to get back to the Premier, and obviously Grant’s goals were a big part in that.
“All the talk among our supporters was of him getting into the England squad.
“When you think that Rickie Lambert got his chance, and took it, it’s still mystifying that Grant wasn’t give a go.”
It’s a first return to Carrow Road for Holt, who seems sure to return to fray at Wigan when his Town loan ends on December 28.
But he did face his former club during last season’s loan spell at Aston Villla.
The March match in Birmingham came at a tough time for Norwich, who lost 4-1 and were eventually relegated back to the Championship.
Some visiting fans showed their frustration by cheering Holt after his 82nd-minute introduction and jeering some of their own players.
“That didn’t sit well with me, and I found it embarrassing, although it’s not a criticism of Grant by any means.” added Sainty.
“I’m obviously hoping there isn’t a repeat of anything like that on Saturday, although Grant will certainly get a great reception from Norwich fans.
“His goals were allied with a real desire to put in maximum effort, and that’s what fans like to see.
“Grant’s an old-school type of forward who has come up the hard way and plays with a smile on his face.
“He gave us great service, and while he had lost that little bit of an edge in terms of Premier League football, we were still disappointed to see him go.
“We were also disappointed by the way he slipped out of the picture at Wigan, and it’s been good to see him do well at Huddersfield.
“It sounds like he will be back at Wigan after their change of manager, and hopefully he’ll do well there too, but not at our expense!”
Holt’s Town teammates James Vaughan and Jacob Butterfield also had spells at Norwich, but nothing like as successfully as Holt.
Striker Vaughan, back after a calf injury, was limited to just one start and five appearances from the bench after a £2.5m move from Everton in 2011.
He was loaned to Town in his second season in Norfolk and the move was made permanent for £600,000 in July 2013.
Midfielder Butterfield joined Norwich from Barnsley in July 2012, but his only outings came in cup football.
He had loans to Bolton Wanderers and Crystal Palace before signing for Middlesbrough in September 2013 (he moved to Town in August).
Sainty recalled: “James Vaughan came with a good reputation, but struggled with injuries and things never really got going for him here.
“It was the same for Jacob Butterfield, who was signed by Paul Lambert but didn’t seem to fit after Chris Hughton became manager.”