Stuart Webber is keeping his options open at Norwich City
PUBLISHED: 07:23 23 June 2017 | UPDATED: 07:23 23 June 2017
Stuart Webber will leave no stone unturned to equip the Canaries for Championship combat.
City lead the way in the second tier with four new additions already to Daniel Farke’s squad in the close season. Marley Watkins rejected interest from a number of Championship rivals to seal a free transfer from Barnsley before Angus Gunn arrived on a season-long loan from Manchester City.
Norwich have also acted decisively to tap the German market, with Mario Vrancic arriving from SV Darmstadt and towering centre back Christoph Zimmermann re-united with his old mentor Farke, as sporting director Webber looks to re-produce his success at Premier League Huddersfield.
“All I ask for people on recruitment is to be open-minded to free transfers to loan signings to foreign players to expensive players. There is no right or wrong,” he said. “It is about a good balance to the squad in terms of age, positions, numbers and personalities. That is our main priority. We have a big squad and we have to do a lot of work on it but let’s look back on September 1 and say the squad is far more balanced than it has been last season.”
Webber opted not to take up a buy option in Mitchell Dijks’ short term deal, but Gunn’s pending arrival is a clear signal City’s SD is willing to use the loan route.
“We have to be open for it,” he said. “There are a number of reasons to use the loan route. At Huddersfield we couldn’t afford a certain player so a loan allowed us to fill a gap in our squad with a high quality player we couldn’t buy, and you can take Kasey Palmer, Izzy Brown or Aaron Mooy. Unfortunately we couldn’t afford to go and buy one of those and they wouldn’t probably come. Here is slightly different but I see a loan signing as a way to enhance a squad or to plug a gap. Let’s say we have a youngster who has a real chance, but we don’t think he is quite ready so you can bring in a guy for a year, who plugs that gap, which allows you to either loan out the youngster or let him play in the development squad.
“The other dimension is what we did with Mitchell, who we loaned with an option to buy. We did that at Huddersfield with (Elias) Kachunga, which is a great chance to try before you buy, and when he did well enough we exercised an option to buy before I left.”