Huckerby: I haven't decided on anything
Chris Lakey Darren Huckerby says his loyalty to Norwich City should never be questioned, amid reports that he is set to leave Carrow Road in the summer.
Darren Huckerby says his loyalty to Norwich City should never be questioned, amid reports that he is set to leave Carrow Road in the summer.
City's flying winger, so long the talisman of the side, has been sidelined in recent weeks under manager Glenn Roeder -a spell which has coincided with a stunning reversal in form which has seen City move away from the relegation zone.
Huckerby's contract ends in the summer and his agent, Phil Smith - who famously had a fall-out with his client over his move to City in December, 2003 - claims he will be looking for pastures new.
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And while Huckerby, 31, refused to confirm the reports, he did little to hide his frustrations at being on the bench at the club he has so often dragged up by the bootlaces.
“I haven't heard him (Smith) say it - he is entitled to his own opinion, as he has done before which has turned out wrong,” said Huckerby.
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“Who knows? My contract is up at the end of the season. My loyalty should never be questioned to this club, over the years. I will serve out my remaining contract then we will see from there.
“I haven't been offered anything from the club, I haven't even spoken to the club, so read into that what you will.”
Smith said he couldn't see Huckerby staying at Norwich past the summer.
“He's out of contract at the end of the season and he won't be staying at Norwich,” he said. “There have been no discussions over a new contract.”
Asked whether or not he wanted to stay, Huckerby said: “At this minute in time I am not playing, I am not a regular starter. I know I am not possibly the future of the club any more, which is obvious because you have myself and Dion (Dublin), we're getting old. At the minute I haven't decided what I am going to do, I haven't decided on anything.
“This club means a lot to me and I would never leave lightly.
“I am probably one of the only ones who have stayed through thick and thin - other people have left whenever they could, as soon as they got the chance, but I never had and I will honour my contract, which I think is very important.”
Huckerby has been a victim of Roeder's preference of playing just one winger - and Lee Croft's current form - and admitted he was frustrated.
“It is disappointing, but I want the team to win, and the team are winning,” he said. “I want to play, don't get me wrong, but at the minute everything is working out pretty well and the most important thing is Norwich City. Long after I am gone there will still be a Norwich City - I know the gaffer likes to use that but it's true,
“I am only going to be playing for a few more years anyway, then I'll be watching Norwich, so I want them to do as well as anybody.”
Huckerby is currently recovering from a hip problem which forced him to miss the opening of the season - and has been blamed for a dip in form of late.
And while he says he is fit to face Preston at Carrow Road this afternoon, there is no guarantee he will start - a situation he has rarely faced in the four years that he has been a Norwich player.
“Let's not try and be big-headed, but for the last four, four and a half years, I've carried most of the Norwich City attack, not on my own, but if you look at the stats I have probably created or scored most of the goals,” said Huckerby.
“I know I have had help from very good players, but I've had a bit of responsibility for four and a half years and now I haven't got as much responsibility, so it is difficult.
“But I am a team player and I want the team to do well, so whatever it takes for the team to do well I will do.”
Huckerby's name has never been far from transfer rumours but he maintained his promise that he would never play for another English team.
“You should know by now I am a man of my word,” he said. “There have been plenty of times - I can remember when my agent said I was too good for Norwich City and I stayed here and we won the league. When I have said something usually it has been right.
“There have been a lot of rumours - if anybody had asked me I would have told them straight away. I was meant to be signing for Crystal Palace, I was meant to be going to Toronto last week. If you'd asked me I'd have told you that my loyalties have always been with Norwich City and they will be to the end of my contract.”