City academy chief on rumours linking stars with big money moves

PUBLISHED: 06:00 16 January 2020

Max Aarons is continually being linked with a move away from Carrow Road. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Max Aarons is continually being linked with a move away from Carrow Road. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Paul Chesterton

Norwich City academy manager Steve Weaver insists that speculation linking City’s young talent with big-money moves away from Carrow Road should be taken as praise for the role the Canaries youth setup have played in their development.

City's youngsters have been the subjects of constant speculation since the opening of the January window, with Max Aarons and Todd Cantwell the characters being repeatedly touted with big-money moves away.

Aarons in particular has been linked with virtually every top team in England, including Jose Mourinho's Tottenham Hotspur as well as German giants Borussia Dortmund.

Cantwell's goal-scoring exploits have propelled him into limelight, with champions Manchester City and Liverpool rumoured to be keen on acquiring his services this month.

Whilst some may see the links as distracting and harmful, Weaver is keen to ensure City take it as a hat tip to their work in developing their own talent.

Norwich City's academy manager Steve Weaver was disappointed with the defeat to Manchester United in the FA Youth Cup. Picture: Neil DidsburyNorwich City's academy manager Steve Weaver was disappointed with the defeat to Manchester United in the FA Youth Cup. Picture: Neil Didsbury

"If some of the lads are doing that well that they are getting credit, then brilliant," said Weaver.

"If any of those lads leave, it's because they're performing to a standard that those big clubs want.

"It's not a backwards step from our side but it's actually quite a positive thing for the academy if one was to go, but ultimately that's a first team issue so it's nothing to do with me."

City boss Daniel Farke categorically ruled out selling Aarons, but his name continues crop up in rumour columns.

The club's financial situation is well-documented, with Weaver reiterating that it would become difficult for City to hold onto their assets should a big club come knocking.

"I think that for clubs of our size, we are always going to find ourselves at the mercy of the bigger clubs.

"The success of our academy will come to whether people want our players and that's the key. At the moment, whether it's speculation or not, it seems to be that there is a bit of interest because of how they've played.

"The lads have earned that themselves and if any of that happens, then that is for them to decide with the club.

"We're pleased that they're doing that well that they're being linked to big clubs."

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