Butterworth in frame for Norwich

Matthew Chambers New Norwich City manager Bryan Gunn is believed to be targeting Hartlepool's assistant manager and reserve team boss Ian Butterworth in a bid fill the position of his No.

Matthew Chambers

New Norwich City manager Bryan Gunn is believed to be targeting Hartlepool's assistant manager and reserve team boss Ian Butterworth in a bid fill the position of his No. 2 at Carrow Road.

Former Canary central defender Butterworth has been working alongside Pool's director of sport, Chris Turner, since Danny Wilson was sacked in December and is currently helping to prepare the first team for their crunch FA Cup fourth round clash against West Ham at the weekend.

The 44-year-old declined to comment on the possibility that he's the missing man in City's new management team, but he would certainly appear to tick the necessary boxes of experience and yellow and green heritage.


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There are, however, various sticking points that might hinder the move. Clearly, if Butterworth was to leave before the weekend it could prove detrimental to Hartlepool's chances in the Cup, and leave them very short in the coaching department.

However, Gunn could quite easily decide to bide his time until after the weekend and City's next match against Southampton on Tuesday. Goalkeeping coach Tommy Wright and academy manager Ricky Martin were his back-up team in the 4-0 win over Barnsley, plus he has the experience of new chief scout John Deehan to count on. New first team coach Ian Crook is also due to arrive later this week from Australia, and could start work on Sunday.

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Another stumbling block might be the fact that Hartlepool were unhappy with City last season over Paul Stephenson's protracted move to Carrow Road to join Glenn Roeder as first team coach.

Gunn is clearly looking to add further footballing nous to his backroom staff and said yesterday he was hoping to complete his team in the next few days.

He said: “There's still an opportunity to maybe look at bringing in one other member of staff. That's something we will be actively looking at in the coming days and again, something the board of directors have given me the opportunity to look at.”

Butterworth has plenty of experience as a No. 2, having been assistant to former City team-mate David Hodgson when the pair led Darlington to a Wembley appearance in the Division Three play-off final in 1999-2000.

Butterworth was appointed assistant to Alan Cork at Cardiff City in 2000, having resigned from Darlington, and was number two to Lennie Lawrence as the Bluebirds gained promotion to Division One - now the Championship - in 2003.

Also, having made 293 appearances for Norwich in an eight-year spell and having been skipper during the Canaries' 1993 UEFA Cup run, he would clearly have the club's best interests at heart.

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