Norwich City close in on Liverpool defender Ayala

PUBLISHED: 13:55 12 August 2011

Norwich City captain Grant Holt appears to be tickled by Daniel Ayala's headgear during Hull City's 2-0 win at Carrow Road last season.

Norwich City captain Grant Holt appears to be tickled by Daniel Ayala's headgear during Hull City's 2-0 win at Carrow Road last season.

Archant © 2010

Norwich City boss Paul Lambert confirmed at this morning's press conference that the Canaries have agreed a deal to sign Liverpool defender Daniel Ayala.

Lambert revealed Ayala is undergoing a medical today ahead of a potential move from the Reds after holding positive talks with Kenny Daglish.

“He’s here at the minute, he’s talking, and I think he’s having a medical which we’ll find out later on if everything’s okay,” said Lambert. “If that goes through it’ll be next week before I see him. I just think you’ve got to have a lot of cover throughout the coming games and a long hard season.

“He’s a young player and obviously played against us for Hull and Derby and I thought he was strong and aerial as well, he was somebody we thought could benefit the football club. There is things going on at the minute but we’ll just wait and see if it transpires. It’ll probably be next week before something happens but we have put in a bid. We’re more or less there and we’ll see how today goes. It was something we thought might transpire so we made an enquiry. I spoke to Kenny and Kenny was great about it.”

Daglish on Friday lunchtime revealed Ayala is Norwich-bound when he said at his pre-match press conference: “The only one going is Daniel Ayala. He’s going to Norwich.”

Ayala joined Liverpool from Seville in the summer of 2007 before making his senior debut in the opening game of the 2009/10 campaign at Tottenham. The centre back has since made five appearances for the Reds before loan stints at Hull and fellow Championship club Derby.

Lambert also confirmed that City’s out-of-favour full back Steven Smith is a loan target for Preston North End. Smith was reportedly at Deepdale in midweek to watch Preston’s 3-2 Carling Cup win over Crewe ahead of a potential loan switch. The 26-year-old has not been included in any of City’s pre-season warm-up action and has not been issued with a Norwich squad number for the Premier League season.

“That isn’t too far away from being concluded. Hopefully that will go through for Steven’s sake because he needs to get back playing football,” said Lambert.

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