Thursday, January 10, 2013
Norwich City are believed to be interested in Hamburg midfielder Per Ciljan Skjelbred – although the Canaries’ Premier League opponents this weekend are the club in pole position to land the 25-year-old.
The former Rosenborg star has been told he can leave the German Bundesliga club for free during the January transfer window, and Newcastle United – who visit Carrow Road at the weekend – have held preliminary talks about a possible move to England. But with the Magpies now stalling, it is understood Norwich have made contact.
Hughton scouted Skjelbred during his time in charge at Newcastle, but was reportedly unwilling to match the fee Rosenborg were demanding.
The Norway international has 16 caps, his last coming in 2010. He was also a team-mate of compatriot and current Norwich midfielder Alex Tettey at Rosenborg.
Meanwhile, tabloid reports on Wednesday suggested the Canaries have upped their bid for Celtic striker Gary Hooper.
The Mirror report Norwich are trying to lure the Bhoys’ hit man with the offer of a £30,000 per week contract – which they say would top by some way the club’s current highest earner, captain Grant Holt who signed a new three-year deal in the summer.
Hooper has turned down a new deal from the Parkhead club, who have made the knock-out stages of this season’s Champions League. The 24-year-old’s current deal is due to end in the summer of 2014.
City boss Hughton was at Celtic’s recent clash with Motherwell, in which Hooper scored – and that has led to a number of Celtic players being linked to the Canaries.
Hooper made his name with Scunthorpe, and reportedly came close to joining Southampton in 2011 on a deal that would have reportedly paid him £50,000 per week once they reached the top-flight. Hooper has an impressive 62 goals in 106 games for the Glasgow club.
With a striker seeming to be top of Hughton’s list, the Mirror continued to link Swansea striker Danny Graham as a possible plan B should City fail to capture Hooper – although that option appears to be receding as Sunderland close in on taking the 27-year-old back to the north east.
The tabloid adds that initial enquiries for Monaco’s Ibrahima Toure have gone no further.