Delia and Michael hoping sporting director Webber will sign new Canaries contract
PUBLISHED: 18:58 07 August 2019 | UPDATED: 19:06 07 August 2019
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Norwich City’s majority shareholders Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones have suggested giving sporting director Stuart Webber a new contract is an immediate priority.
Webber was the man that Delia, Michael and the rest of the City board turned to in March 2017, after the decision to sack Alex Neil with the chances of an immediate return to the Premier League under the Scot all but finished.
The former Huddersfield chief moved for Borussia Dortmund II boss Daniel Farke as the Canaries' first head coach and endured a shaky first season, finishing 14th and with the style of football coming in for plenty of criticism.
However, the new system flourished into an unexpected Championship title victory and a promotion to the Premier League which has realigned the club's financial strength.
"He's vital, not to put it too strongly," Wynn Jones said of Webber. "A lot of this vision has been his and it's all very well having a vision but actually taking it down to the brass facts, in some ways it's been quite ruthless.
"Rightly so. I don't think I would isolate him from Zoe (Ward, the club's business and project director), or Ben (Kensell, chief operating officer) either. They do complementary jobs. I think it's true to say everyone that counts at the club has got a long-term contract. Everyone."
Speaking to The Athletic, Delia picked up her husband's train of thought to say: "A longer contract. Yes, it's the most important (bit of business). What I said when we gave Stuart his Championship medal is without him we wouldn't have Daniel (Farke, the head coach).
"I've said it before and I'll say it again. He's a genius. For us personally, we have related to football in a way we never have before. I've just had an email from Kenny McLean's agent saying 'you've invited me to a match and I'd like to come'.
"I actually think me calling Stuart a genius - I'm shooting myself in the foot because everybody is going to want him. I shouldn't be saying it, really.
"But it is all making it about the team. It's very strong. It's leadership and yet we're so proud we haven't got a leader because it's shared."