Norwich City play a waiting game in transfer window
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Chris Hughton expects Norwich City may have to play a game of patience to snare their transfer targets.
Sky Sports last night reported that City target Danny Graham had asked to leave Swansea due to ‘personal reasons’ – a claim that was later denied – but the striker is just one of a number of high profile frontmen touted with a switch to Norfolk ahead of Thursday’s 11pm deadline.
City have also made bids for Celtic’s Gary Hooper and Hughton has confirmed an interest in Sporting Lisbon’s Ricky van Wolfswinkel along with Kansas City’s Kei Kamara.
The Norwich boss, however, yesterday downplayed speculation City were poised to table a £3m offer for QPR’s Jamie Mackie.
“I think we have been linked with 40 to 50 strikers and with all due respects we are not one of the big clubs as such,” said Hughton.
“He (Mackie) is a name I am aware has been mentioned. He’s also got a quality (value) to QPR. He’s very much their player. The search is on-going. At this moment there is lots of enquires. Until that is fact I can’t tell you any more. We have objectives and, yes, we have put in a couple of bids. They are not our players so the prerogative is then with the clubs who those players are contracted to.
“We are working very hard. I suppose the answer is until I can tell you something that is 100pc then the answer will always be, ‘No, we haven’t done any business.’ I think most managers find it frustrating but we will work right up to until the final day. I think we’ll be late Thursday night. Whether we have done any business by then I don’t know. You hope any business is done before that point, but I won’t be the first or the last manager waiting up until quarter to midnight on deadline day. That is becoming normal nowadays.
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“We can only do our work. Anything additional is done in the right way or the right avenues. The search is on going. At this moment there is lots of enquires. Until that is fact I can’t tell you any more.”
Reports yesterday claimed Graham has told Swansea he wishes to leave “for personal reasons” and wanted to move back to his native north east with Sunderland, who play Swansea at the Liberty Stadium tonight.
City and Sunderland have bids on the table, but a move back to the North East seems his likely destination.
Swansea were quick to deny the reports while chairman Huw Jenkins told BBC Radio Wales: “At the moment there is no substance to this whatsoever.”
Swans’ boss Michael Laudrup, speaking earlier in the day, said he expected the forward to remain at the Liberty Stadium.
“I can only say Danny is here and we want him to stay, we do not want to change things,” said the Dane. “If Danny says he wants to leave and we get an offer then we will have to look at it, otherwise we will keep the same squad we have now. I’ve spoken with Danny, that’s my part of it but obviously there is the economic part as well. Even if a player says he wants to leave because he wants to play more then I can say okay, but if the bid is not close to what Swansea wants then there is nothing to do. Even if a player wants to leave he has to stay. Otherwise every player could come and say they want to leave.”
Sources in the West Midlands continue to suggest Wolverhampton Wanderers boss Dean Saunders wants to take Simeon Jackson to Molineux, while Leeds United have been linked with a similar move to their Championship rivals Leeds United for Steve Morison.
Hughton confirmed he has had no firm offers for any of his current squad.
“Yes, we’ve had a few phone calls and enquiries. Has there been any bids? No, there haven’t,” he said. “My biggest concern is we add to the squad, that is more the case than anybody going. It is a very difficult time.
“There are so many phone calls and agents pushing players. You don’t even know a lot of the time if the players being pushed are available. Probably most of them are not. The only time it isn’t (difficult) is if we can get early the ones you want. If I look at the business done in the striker areas so far, some of them seemed quite straight-forward deals. (Daniel) Sturridge to Liverpool, (Loic) Remy to QPR. They were big transfer fees, but done early.”