Cherries reaping benefits of Billing's decision to snub Norwich interest
- Credit: PA
Scott Parker is grateful to Philip Billing for electing to turn down advances from Norwich City this summer after an impressive start to the season with Bournemouth.
The Danish midfielder was a major target for the Canaries in the summer transfer window before Billing decided to commit his future to the Cherries as they continue their revolution under Parker.
City's interest was firm but the two clubs were wide apart in their valuation of the 25-year-old, who has scored five goals in the opening 10 matches to help Bournemouth climb to the summit of the Championship.
His goal against Sheffield United on Saturday proved decisive as they recorded a 2-1 victory despite falling behind early in the second half.
Norwich eventually recruited midfield trio Mathias Normann, Pierre-Lees-Melou and Billy Gilmour and are unlikely to revive their interest in the Danish midfielder in the foreseeable future.
A price tag of £15million proved too lofty for City and that is understood to have ended their pursuit of Billing, with Bournemouth's financial pressure easing after Arnaut Danjuma completed a big money move to Villarreal.
That was a factor that City hoped would work in their favour as the deadline edged closer, but that sale allowed the Cherries to stand firm in their valuation of Billing, who worked with City sporting director Stuart Webber at Huddersfield.
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Parker, who had a brief loan spell with the Canaries during his playing days, isn't surprised there was so much speculation surrounding Billing earlier this summer and believes Bournemouth are reaping the benefits of his decision to stay at Dean Court.
“I’m not surprised (that he is still at the club). There was talk around Phil earlier on in the season.
“He made a decision to stay here, stay with us, improve and get better. We’re lucky to have him, like we’re lucky to have a lot of the players here," the Cherries boss told the Bournemouth Echo after their 2-1 win over Sheffield United.
“My main thing from Phil is I just see someone who is really engaged, someone who wants to get better and improve his game. So, I’m just very pleased with that.”