Norwich in pole position to get Taylor

Norwich are in pole position to snatch Birmingham defender Martin Taylor on a permanent deal. Canaries' chief Glenn Roeder is ready to pounce after Alex McLeish confirmed Taylor had no future at St Andrews.

Norwich are in pole position to snatch Birmingham defender Martin Taylor on a permanent deal.

Canaries' chief Glenn Roeder is ready to pounce after Alex McLeish confirmed Taylor had no future at St Andrews.

Taylor's current loan spell expires after Sheffield United's league visit today - but Roeder remains confident of fending off interest from at least two other Championship rivals.

“Birmingham have indicated they're prepared to listen to offers so he can get himself fixed up - which is encouraging for us,” said Roeder. “He had a chat with Alex McLeish and after speaking to him it was made clear that he doesn't feature in his plans and given the right price they would be prepared to let him go.


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“I'd like to be able to extend the loan to January 1 which would buy us some time to talk about the possibility of a permanent deal thereafter. He doesn't go straight back after the Sheffield United game. He's here for another few days and I'll be sitting down again to talk with Martin.

“We certainly need him. He's been an important part of the three wins we've picked up and done everything he could in his own performances.”

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Former Blues' boss Steve Bruce paid Blackburn £1.25m for Taylor in 2004 but he feature only once this season in a league cup defeat against his former side before Bruce's departure.

Roeder's first loan signing had a barnstorming City debut in the 2-2 derby draw against Ipswich and the 28-year-old has since established himself as a defensive rock in the new manager's reshaped line up. Roeder plans a charm offensive to convince Taylor his long term future lies in Norfolk.

“I think we're a good position,” he said. “There are a couple of other clubs interested - one of those I believe is in London and knowing Martin as I do I don't believe that would appeal to him. He has enjoyed his time here and being in this environment.” Roeder also confirmed he will step up his bid to keep young Premiership midfield duo Jimmy Smith and Matty Pattison on the Carrow Road payroll.

Chelsea youngster Smith is in line for a start against the Blades after impressing Roeder with Darel Russell suspended.

“He has stepped up immensely in training,” said Roeder. “He has been first class, shown a great attitude and that is why he has been on the bench in the last few games.

“Matty I know all about and he will improve the more football he plays. They are two young players involved in a pressure situation. I'd like to keep both. I have to speak to Frank Arnesen at Chelsea. I know Frank fairly well and I will tell him I don't think Jimmy could be anywhere better at this stage of his career. I'd hope Frank would allow us to keep him for the rest of the season.

“I have to say I'm looking at all positions in terms of strengthening. It's difficult sometimes because it can change on a daily basis but arguably you could look at every area of the squad.”

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