June 20 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Birmingham City boss and ex-Norwich assistant manager Lee Clark insists he is under no pressure to sell reported Canary target Curtis Davies.
City chief Chris Hughton admitted prior to departing for the club’s Austrian pre-season training camp he is a big admirer of the central defender after working with him closely at St Andrews.
Hughton declined to reveal if the Canaries had made a firm offer, but Clark has held positive talks in a bid to keep Davies in the Midlands.
“I haven’t been told by the board that Curtis has to go. Curtis hasn’t made a point to me he wants to go,” said Clark. “I have had a face-to-face meeting with Curtis, he was very positive in the meeting, he has been very receptive to the training.
“As I have said all along, we are going to get rumours because there are good players here. I haven’t got a problem with that. All I can say is I haven’t been told by the board that, if a bid comes in, we have to accept it.
“What has been said is – and this has been made public – that for any of the players it would have to be a crazy amount of money for us to consider it.
“And we have shown that when Peter Pannu (acting chairman) turned down £6m for Jack Butland.”
Hughton’s immediate priority is assessing the men already under his command, with this week’s intensive training stint at their base south-east of Graz perfect preparation for the Premier League season ahead.
“I’m very pleased with the lads so far. It’ll be a good week,” he said. “We’ve had early morning sessions, work on the pitches and away from the pitches, and we’ll look to vary it over the week.
“It’s a good environment for them to work. What you want is for them to be fairly secluded, which they are, we’re away from it all. At this time of the year you are perhaps not going to get the quality of pitches we are used to back home right now because they have been used a lot, but the surface here has been great.
“The hope is that we come through this week with no slight injuries, but if there are any, then they are the type of ones that you miss perhaps just a day’s training.”
New summer signing Jacob Butterfield has also travelled with the squad to Austria as he steps up his injury return from a knee problem. Hughton told the club’s official site the former Barnsley midfielder will benefit from the trip.
“It’s vitally important to get away,” he said. “That is why we brought Jacob with us because with the work he is doing he is not able to join in with everything the rest of the lads are doing.
“We could have left him at home, but he is better here. We have two of our physios, our masseur and all the medical staff over here so it is one where he can do all the work he needs and certain aspects where he can join in with the rest of the lads, which is a plus for him.”