Hartson returned to sender

CHRIS LAKEY John Hartson has been shown the door by Canaries boss Glenn Roeder - a week early. The bulky striker was told by Roeder yesterday morning that his services would no longer be required and that he was free to return to his parent club, West Bromwich Albion.

CHRIS LAKEY

John Hartson has been shown the door by Canaries boss Glenn Roeder - a week early.

The bulky striker was told by Roeder yesterday morning that his services would no longer be required and that he was free to return to his parent club, West Bromwich Albion.

Hartson had been signed on a three-month loan deal by caretaker boss Jim Duffy, with options to terminate the deal after one and two months - but Roeder has decided enough is enough.

"We will let John go," said Roeder (pictured). "I shan't include him on Saturday either, which I could do."

However, when Roeder was asked the reasons why he wasn't keeping Hartson on, he said simply: "I think I would rather let you make your own mind up."

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Hartson came to Norwich on October 16, and his presence quickly became one of the main talking points among supporters, many of whom were divided over playing someone who had undoubted touches of class, but was clearly lacking match fitness.

The 32-year-old started two games and came off the bench for the two others during his stay in Norfolk, and although he failed to find the back of the net, he was instrumental in the derby day comeback against Ipswich last Sunday when he came on as a half-time replacement for the injured Dion Dublin.

However, he lasted less than an hour against Watford on Tuesday when his replacement by sub Chris Martin was greeted by loud cheers from many sections of Carrow Road.

For a player who played just four times for City, Hartson stirred up more than his fair share of interest, with internet message boards buzzing yesterday at news of his departure - but for the player it might spell the end of a long career after he admitted he would consider retirement if his Norwich spell didn't work out.