It’s all a waiting game - Hucks' agent

PUBLISHED: 11:45 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 15:32 10 September 2010

Michael Bailey

Darren Huckerby's agent Phil Smith today performed a dramatic U-turn over the City winger's Norwich City future. Earlier in the season Smith had shocked Canaries fans by declaring that Huckerby would not be staying after his contract runs out in the summer.

Darren Huckerby's agent Phil Smith today performed a dramatic U-turn over the City winger's Norwich City future.

Earlier in the season Smith had shocked Canaries fans by declaring that Huckerby would not be staying after his contract runs out in the summer.

Now, however, it appears Smith is patiently waiting by the phone for any offers to come out of Carrow Road.

Huckerby, who celebrated his 32nd birthday yesterday, is one of a clutch of City players whose future will continue to hang in the balance until the Canaries manage to secure their place in the Coca-Cola Championship for next season - or the unthinkable happens and City slip into English football's third tier for the first time in 48 years.

Sunderland have reportedly shown an interest in signing the former Newcastle and Leeds star after his contract at Carrow Road expires in June, which would go against Huckerby's previous declarations that Norwich would be his last club in England.

Joining the likes of David Beckham in America's Major League Soccer also remains an option for the winger, but as yet, all plans are on hold until Smith gets the call to either do business with the Canaries or tout around his client in with the aim of finding pastures new.

“We've heard nothing,” said Smith, on both rumours linking Huckerby to the North East and on any indication whether City's match at home to Queens Park Rangers will be his last.

“He was always going to be playing the season through at Norwich and nothing has changed really. Until the die is cast and we know where we're going to be, it's a case of waiting to hear from the club about what they have decided.”

“That [a move to the MLS in America] was put in a while back but until we know what's happening at Norwich, there's nothing to say. It's still too early, but very soon we'll know.”

Smith refused to criticise the club for leaving Huckerby's contract situation unresolved until the end of the season, or City's safety is secured - with Canaries fans hoping the latter comes first on Saturday afternoon.

“He's not the only one in that boat at the club, and it's the case for several players at other clubs too. It has been a while since he's been out of contract so we'll just have to wait to see what the club says.”

The rumour mill surrounding Huckerby's future beyond the summer break has gently begun to grind, with Roy Keane's Premier League charges Sunderland first to be linked in the latest round of gossip.

And sources in the North East confirmed that while a summer move to the Stadium of Light for the 32-year-old would be surprising, it could happen.

Keane is expected to add plenty of numbers to his Black Cats' squad once the Irishman begins his plans for a second season in the top flight and, with a lack of pace in midfield, a swoop for someone of Huckerby's pedigree an a free transfer may represent good value for money and a tempting proposition.

Former Carrow Road team-mate Dickson Etuhu would be a familiar face should Huckerby make the move North. However, that would mean the player, dearly loved by the Canaries faithful, reneging on his promise to see out his career in English football at Carrow Road.

All of which might make for a much longer switch - across the Atlantic - for a lucrative final contract in the American soccer leagues. Or that Carrow Road contract extension may just appear after all.

Either way, there are unlikely to be any answers before Huckerby takes his potentially final bow in a yellow shirt on Saturday.

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