Flop Fozzy - I probably stayed a season too long

Former Norwich City skipper Mark Fotheringham has admitted he may have made a mistake in signing a new contract with the club last summer. Fotheringham agreed a one-year deal to stay at Carrow Road, but his season ended in exile from the first team after his angry reaction to being substituted in the 2-1 home defeat by Coventry in February.

Former Norwich City skipper Mark Fotheringham has admitted he may have made a mistake in signing a new contract with the club last summer.

Fotheringham agreed a one-year deal to stay at Carrow Road, but his season ended in exile from the first team after his angry reaction to being substituted in the 2-1 home defeat by Coventry in February. The 25-year-old midfielder did not figure in manager Bryan Gunn's plans for the final 11 Championship games and his contract was terminated early by mutual consent.

Fotheringham, now hoping to play in Europe next season, said he was persuaded to stay at Carrow Road last summer by the previous management team of Glenn Roeder and Lee Clark.

He said: "What happened at Norwich was unfortunate. Perhaps I should have left last summer but Glenn and Lee are great guys to work under and convinced me to stay one more year. But the problems with the money started and the writing was on the wall. Glenn had moved 14 players out and there were no funds."

Fotheringham told the Daily Record he was close to signing a deal to play in Spain after a week's trial with Espanyol. He said: "Espanyol have said they want to offer me something and I have also had two offers from other La Liga teams. Basically, I went out there and had one training session and two matches. My lawyer and agents were there at the time and brought other sport directors to watch the games.

"I left after the second game as I needed to get home. At that stage I didn't know if Espanyol were going to offer me something but I did know there would be offers from the other two. I was going to come home and think about things. But Espanyol then came to my agents and said they also wanted to offer something. Whether that is to go back for talks or for to sign something, I'm not exactly sure. But things went really well and it was a worthwhile trip.

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"The standard at the top of La Liga is fantastic. I'm not silly. I realise all the big leagues have a top group of clubs. In Spain you have Barcelona, Real Madrid, Sevilla and Atletico Madrid. There is a massive gulf between them and the rest but the competition is still fantastic. Espanyol won 2-0 in the Nou Camp last season so it would be excellent to get involved in those games.

"We had a guy at Norwich who came from Spain called Juan Velasco and you could see his technique. There is a big contrast between Spain and England so it's going to be very exciting."