Gunn waiting over Maric proposal

Chris Lakey Norwich City have offered defender Jens Berthel Askou a contract - but the wait for Goran Maric's Norwich City future goes on. The 26-year-old Askou joined City on their Scotland tour as a triallist and did enough in three pre-season starts to warrant an offer.

Chris Lakey

Norwich City have offered defender Jens Berthel Askou a contract - but the wait for Goran Maric's Norwich City future goes on.

The 26-year-old Askou joined City on their Scotland tour as a triallist and did enough in three pre-season starts to warrant an offer.

Canaries boss Bryan Gunn is now awaiting an answer from Askou, who has returned to his native Denmark to sort out personal business - but revealed that he had consulted former Canaries defender Steen Nedergaard as part of his “due diligence” process.


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“We have made Jens an offer and we are currently waiting to hear back from his representatives,” said Gunn. “He is in Denmark, he had to go back for a personal situation to sort out.

“Certainly we were impressed with what we saw with Jens from his time with us. We have also spoken to Steen Nedergaard in Denmark and did some background work on his previous playing record. We know that he was playing in Turkey so we did a bit of due diligence and the fact that he has come in and done so well and settled in with the squad we have decided to offer him a contract.

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“We are currently waiting to hear back from Denmark for that response. I would expect him to have other offers, but certainly I am hopeful because he has come in and he has integrated with the squad in Scotland and impressed the other players in the squad and it looked like he enjoyed his time here.

“If it wasn't for a personal problem that he needed to go back to sort out he could have still been with us today and we would have been having more personal discussions and unfortunately it's at the end of a telephone at the moment, but he's certainly one that we were keen to make happen if everything is right for Jens as well.”

If Askou's signature is secured it means Gunn ticks an important box in his planning schedule.

“At the moment we are working on the assumption that we do need another centre half and we will be continuing to look at that situation, but certainly Jens has done enough to impress us and warrant a contract offer from us,” he said.

Gunn already has Michael Nelson and skipper Gary Doherty - as well as veteran Dejan Stefanovic who, he confirmed, is still in his plans.

Stefanovic has a year left on his contract, but, as one of the higher earners, might be considered a luxury at Carrow Road, where Gunn has some tight budgets to work to.

“He is currently in my first team plans for the season,” he said.

“Dejan is fully fit in terms of the physical condition, it's just really when we decide to give him the game time. He's still building the fitness levels up through pre-season, doing everything with the rest of the squad, but really the next big step I suppose is actually getting minutes on the pitch.”

The Maric situation remains something of a mystery, with Gunn declining to reveal the Serb's answer to his contract offer.

“I will just reiterate what I said - I know the player's decision but it wouldn't be right of me to give that decision out now,” Gunn said.

“We have made him an offer, he has had other offers on the table from other clubs so as a matter of, I suppose, sensitivity we won't be commenting on the decision, but I do know his decision.”

A third triallist, Kiwis striker Kris Bright, came on for the latter stages of Saturday's 1-1 home draw against a Manchester United XI on Saturday and will be given another chance to shine tonight, at Crystal Palace.

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