Doc's surprise at Norwich City exit
Defender Gary Doherty has admitted he was surprised to be offloaded by Norwich City after playing a key role in their League One title success.The 30-year-old centre-half has signed a two-year deal with Charlton, less than three months after skippering City to a promotion-clinching victory at The Valley.
Defender Gary Doherty has admitted he was surprised to be offloaded by Norwich City after playing a key role in their League One title success.
The 30-year-old centre-half has signed a two-year deal with Charlton, less than three months after skippering City to a promotion-clinching victory at The Valley.
Doherty was the most notable casualty of manager Paul Lambert's squad overhaul as his six years at Carrow Road ended the day after the club's city centre parade.
“It was a bit of a surprise to be released by Norwich because I had a great rapport with the fans there and things were going well,” said Doherty.
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“But the manager made his decision and he felt he wanted to bring in new players, which I accept.
“Last season started with me as captain but the new manager came in and wanted to shake things up a bit. But then injuries struck and I was given a chance to get myself back in. Once I was back in the side I was determined to stay there.
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“It wasn't nice to be left out but I kept myself fit and I think I showed the right attitude, which is really important.”
Charlton are Doherty's fourth club after starting his career with Luton, then Tottenham.
“It's good for me to have got a move like this to a club like Charlton and I'm really looking forward to the new challenge,” he said.
“I've always been a bit of a sticker at clubs. I was at Tottenham for four years and Norwich for six, so I'm not used to looking for a new club.
“It was great to leave Norwich on a high note and I loved my time there but now it's time for me to move on.”
Doherty became Phil Parkinson's first signing of the summer and said: “I'm just delighted to get signed and I'm looking forward to getting going. I can't wait to pull the shirt on for the first time and hopefully have a successful season here.
“When the gaffer started preparing the team after the upset of the play-off defeat, he rang me pretty much straight away, which was great.
“It's been something which has been going on for a while, but I'm just delighted to be on board. I think it's a move that is going to be worth waiting for.
“I got promoted with Norwich last year but we lost at The Valley and got relegated there the year before, so it's a ground with mixed emotions for me.
“I've played there for Ireland as well. A lot of things have happened to me at The Valley, so I'm hoping it can be a good hunting ground for me because you need really good home form to get out of this league.”
Charlton were League One promotion pacesetters last season before Doherty helped Norwich overhaul them.
“Charlton got off to an absolutely terrific start, which is something we will all be trying to do this year,” he said.
“We were very aware of Charlton. It was Norwich, Leeds and Charlton that were up there for a long time. I was just happy that Norwich got there and hopefully I can do that again with Charlton.
“It was nice to get the call from Charlton. There were a few calls but Charlton were always going to be my main one.”