Will Newcastle's Nile be City’s next loan ranger?
Paddy Davitt Norwich City boss Paul Lambert is reportedly tracking Newcastle's young striker Nile Ranger. Fresh speculation in the north east over the weekend linked the Canaries with a season-long loan move for the England Under-19 international.
Norwich City boss Paul Lambert is reportedly tracking Newcastle's young striker Nile Ranger.
Fresh speculation in the north east over the weekend linked the Canaries with a season-long loan move for the England Under-19 international.
Ranger's agent confirmed recently that Magpies' chief Chris Hughton is prepared to let the pacy frontman leave on loan next season - alerting a posse of potential Coca-Cola Championship and League One suitors, including Lambert.
The Canaries' manager has consistently ruled out relying heavily on the loan route favoured by one his predecessors, Glenn Roeder - but the successful extended deal for Ranger's Newcastle team-mate Fraser Forster proved a key factor in the club's League One triumph.
Lambert has already bolstered his defence and midfield during the opening weeks of the close season with the captures of Andrew Crofts and Elliott Ward but is clearly also in the market for attacking reinforcements.
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Player of the season Grant Holt and Chris Martin plundered 53 goals between them in all competitions but raw back-up strikers Oli Johnson and Cody McDonald are both untested at Championship level.
Lambert does not have the financial resources to compete with the better established second tier clubs and Ranger could prove a useful addition to his squad after making 25 appearances during the Geordies' title-winning season.
Ranger's agent, Nick Rubery, admitted the Londoner's Premiership opportunities at St James' Park are likely to be limited with the 19-year-old currently behind Andy Carroll, Peter L�venkrands, Leon Best and one-time Norwich target Shola Ameobi.
Hughton has also been linked with a free transfer raid for Rangers' Scottish international striker Kris Boyd after the SPL champions confirmed last week he will leave Ibrox this summer.
"Obviously, Nile has total respect for Chris Hughton and it is entirely up to him what he decides to do but the indication that we have been given is that he will be going out on loan next season," said Rubery. "I think the thinking is that he needs first-team football to progress and that he might not get that in the Premier League which I think is understandable.
"I think it would probably benefit him if he went out on loan to experience first-team football. It has been shown to work in the past with other players and it's a route open to Nile. He has two years left on his contract and wants to stay. Nile's at a great club and he certainly doesn't want to leave."
Ranger was handed a 3�-year deal by former Magpies' caretaker boss Alan Shearer before he had even made his Newcastle first team debut after being recruited by ex-director of football Dennis Wise in 2008.
The 6ft 2in striker made his senior bow in the club's opening day Championship draw at West Bromwich Albion and scored his first league goal in a 2-0 win at Coventry in December but missed the last few weeks of the campaign with an ankle injury.