Aarons backed to play Champions League football next year by City chief
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Much has been made of Max Aarons' potential, but Norwich City's head of football development Steve Weaver is expecting him to play European football after he leaves Carrow Road.
The 21-year-old has been linked with Bayern Munich, Manchester United and Everton in recent weeks, with Barcelona picking up the phone to City's sporting director Stuart Webber to express their interest in the right-back last summer.
Aarons was also the subject of a bid, believed to be from Italian side Roma, in January before electing to stick with the Canaries for the remainder of the season.
Weaver believes the right-back possesses the talent to reach the upper echelons of the game and isn't entirely convinced that playing Champions League football would be the ceiling for Aarons.
"I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Max Aarons was playing Champions League football next year.
"I’m not sure there’s a ceiling for him. There hasn’t been a single part of his journey so far where he hasn’t been completely in control or looked completely comfortable.
"Growing up, it didn’t really matter where you played him – he was always just really, really good. Seven or eight out of 10, every single week," Weaver told the Coaches Voice.
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"When Daniel Farke first started noticing him, he just shot up. In a really short space of time, Max (below) went from the outskirts of the squad to nobody being able to believe the Norwich first team had been making do without him.
"There’s no indication from Max that he wouldn’t be able to play at any level.
"But we’re not concerned about that at Norwich. We have to be ready for a big bid to come in for him. It’s no surprise to us that he’s being talked about as a potential signing for some of the biggest clubs around."
City's owner Delia Smith expressed her thoughts last month that Aarons would reach the very top of the game, but that wouldn't come during his stay with Norwich. The expectation is that the right-back becomes the latest to earn a big-money move away from Carrow Road in the near future.
He would be following in the footsteps of Ben Godfrey and James Maddison, both of whom have thrived since joining Premier League clubs. When that day does arrive, City will be prepared according to Weaver.
"We’re always planning for the future because we have lots of talented boys in the first team. When Ben Godfrey left for Everton, we had to be prepared for that. When James Maddison left, we had been developing Todd Cantwell and Emi Buendía to step up.
"And, when we sell, our targets in that window aren’t necessarily for an immediate return. We might be selling a big player, but we’ll have been planning for that eventuality for a while.
"The staff here at Norwich meet regularly to discuss succession plans throughout the squad. The club has been really good at preparing for, say, the Murphy brothers, Josh and Jacob, leaving. It’s a big part of our business model. We know we have to sell when the right offer comes along for a player, and a lot of strategy goes into that. Without selling we can’t survive – or thrive – as we do.
"We always know that we have a few good lads coming through who might be able to step up when somebody leaves."