Saturday 24 February 2018

Canaries eye late summer swoops

Alex Neil has targeted more signings at Norwich ahead of the new season
Alex Neil has targeted more signings at Norwich ahead of the new season

Norwich manager Alex Neil has been left frustrated at not being able to land more of his summer transfer targets.

Graham Dorrans, who made his loan move permanent, and free agent Youssouf Mulumbu have been the only confirmed additions to Neil's promotion-winning squad, who are currently away in Austria on a training camp, where they lost 1-0 to Maccabi Haifa on Monday.

The Norfolk club have seen several bids for Hull wing-back Robbie Brady rejected, while interest has also been reported in Celta Vigo targetman Joaquin Larrivey and Blackburn's Rudy Gestede as well as Marcos Alonso at Fiorentina.

Neil, though, remains confident he will be able to assemble the required personnel for the challenges ahead before the summer transfer window closes on September 1.

"We had a really good atmosphere in the squad towards the end of the season and have continued in that vein so far, which is a good thing," Neil told Norwich City TV.

"The only sort of disappointing thing from our point of view is the targets we have tried to attract, we have not managed to get in yet, because you want to try to incorporate them into the group, to make sure everyone is functioning how they can and that we are all in it together, but when you have not signed these players, that can't happen."

Neil added: "It (the summer transfer window) has certainly been difficult for us. It is a newish scenario for me in terms of trying to get so many players in at a different level.

"We have tried our very best, and have been doing a lot of work behind the scenes.

"The frustrating part more is having to wait on others, because we have done what we can do: we have made offers, we have spoken to teams, to players and clubs, it is just about trying to get things over the line.

"Parameters change quite often, which you would hope would not be the case, but we just need to deal with it.

"We will persevere, we will not be deterred and will continue to do what we have to do to get our (new) players in.

"To give ourselves a chance, we have to be competitive in terms of positions, so there has to be at least two players for every position to get the best out of each other, and that is something I am trying to make sure we address."

The Canaries kick off their Barclays Premier League campaign at home to Crystal Palace on August 8.

Neil believes Norwich will be able to hold their own, having secured a swift return to the elite with victory in the Sky Bet Championship play-off final against Middlesbrough at Wembley to cap a remarkable run since his appointment in January.

He said: "We will be making sure all that hard work (to get promoted) does not go to waste, and by getting there, we certainly want to stay there and show everybody what we are capable of doing."

Press Association

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