Huddersfield decide to release former Canaries midfielder
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
He left Norwich City in a hurry out of desperation to play in the Premier League but now Alex Pritchard has been released by Huddersfield, after his move to Yorkshire turned sour.
The Terriers confirmed on Tuesday that they wouldn’t be activating the one-year option in the 28-year-old's contract, after falling out of favour during the second half of last season.
Pritchard failed to score or assist in 19 appearances, just six of which were league starts, having been disrupted by an ankle problem during the opening months of a campaign that ended with Huddersfield six points clear of the relegation zone.
It’s been quite the downturn for a creative midfielder who was highly rated by the Canaries but sold in January 2018 for £11million after making clear he wanted to take the top-flight opportunity on offer.
After an excellent Championship loan at Brentford, Pritchard had an unsuccessful loan at West Brom in the Premier League during 2015-16 and was sold by Tottenham to Norwich for a reported £8million in 2016.
A mostly positive first season with Norwich brought six goals and seven assists during 30 Championship games but a pre-season ankle injury following the arrival of Daniel Farke in 2017 denied him the opportunity to impress the new boss properly.
Huddersfield’s interest came with a bid big enough to persuade Norwich to sell in January 2018, after a goal and two assists in eight games, with sporting director Stuart Webber explaining: “Alex made it clear two games after getting back fit he wanted to leave.”
Having helped the Terriers to survive in the top flight initially, Huddersfield nosedived to relegation in 2018-19, with head coach David Wagner – the man who had been so keen to sign him – leaving midway through the campaign.
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His first season back in the Championship was disrupted by injuries and proved underwhelming, and while he initially was starting under new boss Carlos Corberan this season, Pritchard didn’t play in any of the final 15 matches.
Earlier this year former Huddersfield owner Dean Hoyle admitted that, with the benefit of hindsight, they had ‘overpaid’ to seal a deal with Norwich.
Clubs including Bristol City and Derby have been linked with the Spurs youth product previously so it’s unlikely Pritchard will be short of suitors as a free agent, as he looks to revive his meandering career.