Roeder: Cort signing is a gamble
David Cuffley City boss Glenn Roeder admits to taking a “calculated gamble” by signing striker Carl Cort for the rest of the season.The 31-year-old former Wimbledon, Newcastle and Wolves forward has not played in England for a year, but has joined the Canaries for the remainder of the campaign and could be in the squad for tonight's Championship trip to Watford.
City boss Glenn Roeder admits to taking a “calculated gamble” by signing striker Carl Cort for the rest of the season.
The 31-year-old former Wimbledon, Newcastle and Wolves forward has not played in England for a year, but has joined the Canaries for the remainder of the campaign and could be in the squad for tonight's Championship trip to Watford.
Cort's last competitive game in this country came in Leicester's 2-0 defeat at Hull, exactly 12 months ago next weekend. Since then he has had a short spell in Spain with UD Marbella.
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A persistent knee problem almost forced him to quit, but Cort has worked with top physiotherapist John Green to give himself one last chance of reviving his career.
“He's had a really unlucky time over the past few seasons with injuries,” said Roeder. “He came to us a couple of weeks ago having been working with John Green, who is getting a bit of a name for himself in bringing back players' careers.
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“I got him to work with Kieron Dyer and Michael Owen at Newcastle and he's done a great job on those two players.
“When Carl has been fit he's been an excellent player in the Premiership. He's had a knee injury that's caused him lots of problems but he's been working with John Green for six months or more.
“It is a calculated gamble, of course it is, but every signing's a calculated gamble. A fully-fit Carl Cort would still be playing in the Premiership.
“But he has looked good in training and the knee is not giving him a problem every day after training. He's got a fitness programme that he will have to do for the rest of his life.”
Roeder said Cort deserved to make a success of his comeback.
He said: “Now I have got to know him over the past two weeks he seems a terrific guy, terrific personality and is desperate to play football again. He said it's only when something is taken away from you, you realise how good it is and how much you miss it and he said it's given him a completely different perspective on life and being a professional footballer, where most of us take being fit for granted.
“He's a long way short of match fitness but physically he's in great shape and he must be touching 6ft 5in.
“He didn't have a contract - that's the reason we could sign him before January 1 and play him.
“Because he hasn't had match practice and he won't have match fitness, he would be starting from the bench over the coming weeks, coming on for periods of time. I hope he will stay fit and his match fitness will improve until he gets to a situation where we can start him.
“I just thought the gamble was worth taking in our present situation.”