‘That was a bit of a weird one’ - Ipswich prospect admits there was interest from Canaries
Ipswich Town midfielder Andre Dozzell has confirmed that Norwich City were interested in signing him last summer.
The Canaries had been linked with the defensive midfielder in July 2019 as they prepared for a return to the Premier League but were put off by a £5million valuation.
At the time Dozzell - son of Tractor Boys legend Jason - was entering the final 12 months of his contract, however Town did activate an option in his contract to extend his deal until 2021.
That was despite the 21-year-old only making eight starts and spending most of his time on the bench in League One as Paul Lambert’s team fell short of the play-off mix in 2019-20, yet he has started every match so far this season.
“There was interest (from Norwich) but that was a bit of a weird one, really,” Dozzell told the East Anglian Daily Times. “I just took no notice and focused on my football.
“I’m very ambitious and one day I want to be playing in the Premier League. That is one of my dreams for the future, but for now all I want to do is win promotion this season for Ipswich.
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“They are my club and I’ve been here since I was eight. It would be a dream come true to get promoted and that’s what we have set out to do this season.
“Ipswich are too big a club to be sitting in League One and we’ve got to do everything we can this season to get back to the Championship.”
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City made no bid for Dozzell however, with former Canaries boss Lambert saying at the time it would take “a heck of a lot of money” to persuade Town to part with the England Under-20 international.
Now the Blues are understood to be in talks with the youngster about a new contract, having made his 50th appearance for them recently. He made his debut at 16 years old back in 2016 but missed all of 2017-18 due to a serious knee injury.
Few first team players have crossed the Norfolk-Suffolk border in recent years - although it is more common in coaching and academy circles.
Norwich academy product Tom Adeyemi was one of the most recent examples, although his injury troubles continued with Town, while former Ipswich striker Jordan Rhodes played an important role in City’s 2018-19 Championship promotion season while on loan from Sheffield Wednesday.
More prominent examples over the years have included Andy Marshall, John Deehan, Joe Royle and Trevor Putney, while Ian Crook came dangerously close to the switch before thinking better of it.