Town aim to hijack City’s bid for Carter

Norwich City are locked in a two-way battle with East Anglian rivals Ipswich Town for the services of Darren Carter. Both clubs have made loan enquiries over the availability of the West Brom midfielder, who has a year left on his contract at the Hawthorns.

Norwich City are locked in a two-way battle with East Anglian rivals Ipswich Town for the services of Darren Carter.

Both clubs have made loan enquiries over the availability of the West Brom midfielder, who has a year left on his contract at the Hawthorns.

Norwich City manager Peter Grant is desperate to strengthen his midfield options following the sale of Youssef Safri to Southampton and the injury to on-loan Chelsea star Jimmy Smith.

However, Ipswich boss Jim Magilton has identified Carter as the man to solve his midfield crisis after Gavin Williams injured his ankle in a pre-season friendly against Panathinaikos.


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Other clubs are also keen on the 23-year-old although it is understood that Norwich and Ipswich are currently favourites to sign the former Birmingham man.

Carter has fallen way down the pecking order since Tony Mowbray took charge of the Baggies and the arrival of James Morrison from Middlesbrough for £1.5m will not have done anything to improve his chances of first team football.

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Southampton's Pele is also reportedly on his way to the Midlands club and Carter has intimated a desire to leave the club in pursuit of a regular starting berth alerting Grant and Magilton.

Carter joined West Brom from Birmingham two years ago for £1.5m and has enjoyed mixed fortunes with the Championship side. Many Baggies fans made him a scapegoat for a poor start to last season and when Mowbray took charge Carter found it more difficult to get into the team.

He has a year left on his contract, with the club holding the option for a further 12 months - the optimum point that West Brom can ask for offers.

Carter began his career at Birmingham City, hitting the headlines four months after his debut when, at the age of 18, he scored the winning spot-kick in the Division One play-off final penalty shoot-out against the Canaries at the Millennium Stadium in May, 2002.

He made only 19 starts for Albion last season, but still harbours hopes of establishing himself as a first team regular for the new campaign.

“I want to try to get myself as fit as I can and get into the gaffer's plans,” he said. “This season I want to be playing regularly. I started about 20 games last season and was on the bench about 20 times, which isn't good enough for me.

“I want to push on this season and be playing from the start and contributing to the team.”

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