Green in talks with Premiership club
CHRIS LAKEY Norwich City keeper Robert Green looks to be on his way out of Carrow Road and heading back to the Premiership with Charlton Athletic.
Norwich City keeper Robert Green looks to be on his way out of Carrow Road and heading back to the Premiership with Charlton Athletic.
The Canaries confirmed yesterday that transfer negotiations between the two clubs had taken place and, providing there are no late hitches, the deal is expected to go through in the next couple of days.
One newspaper report suggested Charlton were willing to pay £6m for Green - who is still recovering from injury - but it is understood that that figure is way wide of the mark, and perhaps something closer to the £1m bracket is being discussed.
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Rumours were also circulating yesterday that the Canaries might be about to take a Charlton keeper in part exchange, with internationals Thomas Myhre (Norway) and Stephan Andersen (Denmark) both currently on the books at the Valley.
“There are discussions between the clubs and that is as far as it has gone at the moment,” said Canaries boss Nigel Worthington. “Talks are on-going.”
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Chief executive Neil Doncaster added: “The talks are still at an early stage and no deal has yet been agreed. When and if there is further progress to report we will let supporters know.”
It is understood that Charlton manager Iain Dowie made his move after losing out to Manchester City for the signature of Rennes number one, Swedish international Andres Isaksson.
Green's contract runs out next summer, but City have an option for a further year.
The 26-year-old's future has been under scrutiny almost since the time he established himself in City's first team, back in the summer of 2001 when Andy Marshall departed for Ipswich.
That scrutiny intensified when City were in the Premiership and Green was called into the England squad by Sven-Goran Eriksson, and then given his debut as a half-time substitute in the 3-2 win over Colombia in New Jersey in May last year.
And it didn't end there - with City back in the Championship and Green eager to retain his position as England number three, the obvious conclusion was that the player needed to be in the Premiership and that a move in that direction was never far away. Portsmouth were rumoured to have been close to a deal back in January, with Everton possible summer buyers.
But Green's world - and possibly Norwich's own plans - was suddenly turned upside down in May when, having been included in Eriksson's World Cup squad, he suffered a serious groin injury just minutes after coming on as a half-time sub in the England B international against Belarus at Reading's Madejski Stadium. It ended his World Cup dream and could well have ended immediate hopes of a return to the top flight.
However, Charlton appear to have resurrected the dream - and City will be happy to cash in, particularly with Paul Gallacher having agreed a new two-year contract in the summer and playing well.
Green is currently back in training for City but was not expected to be available for selection until the end of the month.
If the transfer does go through he will leave the club with 241 senior appearances to his name. His final game for the Canaries could turn out to be the 2-0 defeat at Preston on April 8 when he was beaten twice by his own defenders, Jason Shackell and Gary Doherty.
Should Green leave then Worthington is sure to want some cover for current No. 1 Gallacher, with untried youngster Joe Lewis, just 18, the only other professional goalkeeper on the staff at present. So if Charlton were prepared to let either Myhre or Andersen - or highly-rated home-grown youngster Darren Randolph - move in the opposite direction then Worthington could well be interested in doing business.