New players must buy into the ethos of the current Norwich squad, says Chris Hughton

The Canaries have been linked with a January move for Brighton striker Craig Mackail-Smith and midfield team-mate Liam Bridcutt.

Manager Chris Hughton admits he will have to be mindful of Norwich's current strong work ethic when he considers adding to the squad in the January transfer window.

The Canaries have flown up to seventh in the Barclays Premier League after extending their unbeaten run to 10 matches with a 2-1 win over Wigan at Carrow Road on Saturday.

The club have been linked with a January move for Brighton striker Craig Mackail-Smith and midfield team-mate Liam Bridcutt.

However, Hughton wants any new player to buy into the ethos of the current squad, which has now kicked on again following the departure of former manager Paul Lambert to Aston Villa.

"Of course if you can strengthen your team you will look to do it, but it is not as easy as that," Hughton said. "We have a real competitive group and a strong squad who are all fighting.

"Sometimes players who you might think can strengthen your team, it is not the best time to do that in January.

"We will look at it, but if you are asking me will we definitely bring in, then I don't know."

Norwich produced the required response from their midweek 4-1 home Capital One Cup defeat by Villa to record a fifth straight Premier League win at Carrow Road.

But Hughton knows if his side do not maintain their excellent work rate, the next three fixtures - away to West Brom and at home to Chelsea then Manchester City - may not bring much festive cheer.

"Every match is still tough for us and we have to be on top of our game to win," Hughton said.

"We know we have to be disciplined in every performance and everything has to be based on a real hard-working team ethic.

"At some stage we will not be able to continue this run because, for a team like us, it is impossible

"But at the moment, we are in good form and giving everything to get a result. If you can do that, then you always have a chance."

Winger Anthony Pilkington continued his good goalscoring form to set Norwich on their way against the Latics.

The 24-year-old is hopeful of gaining international clearance to represent the Republic of Ireland next year, having played for the under-21s in October 2008, and was watched last weekend by current assistant manager Marco Tardelli.

He said: "I have had a call off them and I am just sorting out the papers at the moment.

"It depends what happens with the next game, which I think is February. I've just got to sort the papers out and take it from there.

"My grandma originates from Ireland - she's from Dublin - so I am more than happy to play for them if selected."

Hughton will monitor the fitness of captain Grant Holt ahead of Saturday's trip to The Hawthorns after the striker picked up a hamstring problem during the closing stages against Wigan.

"It's a concern and a bad time, but it's not right to speak about it in bad terms when we don't really know," Hughton told BBC Norfolk. "Hopefully Grant will be okay. If not, then the competition within the side continues."

Meanwhile, Norwich today announced a new three-year partnership with the American global brand management experts Front Row Marketing Services.

Chief executive David McNally said: "Their depth of experience and expertise in the field of sports brand development and marketing on a global scale will continue to help us to meet our objectives of significantly expanding Norwich City's global footprint."

PA

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