Alan Irvine extends his interim role at Norwich City for Aston Villa trip
- Credit: Jason Dawson
Norwich City fans will be 'excited' with the club's new sporting director appointment, insists chairman Ed Balls.
Huddersfield's head of football operations, Stuart Webber, will take on the role once City thrash out a compensation package with the Terriers, who have reportedly placed Webber on gardening leave.
Balls refused to confirm Webber is City's man on Friday morning, when he did a series of BBC local radio interviews for Red Nose Day, but made it clear Alan Irvine is expected to remain in temporary charge for the Championship visit to Aston Villa after the international break.
'There is lots of speculation which I am not going to comment on other than to say we are close to getting this announced,' he said on BBC Radio Norfolk. 'We look forward to having a sporting director to look right across the strategic side, including recruitment, and then look to help us bring in the head coach. We want to make next season great for Norwich City football club. Nothing is ever done until it is announced but we are on track and I believe it will be a good appointment that gives us a real chance to move forward as a football club. We have thought hard as a board for a number of months about what is the right structure for our club and where modern football is.
'We are not doing things the traditional way, we want a sporting director with experience of the business and football side. With football it is all about results on the pitch but I think Norwich fans will be excited. We can have a good end to the season, and the play-offs are not over for us with Alan Irvine and the team fighting hard. But next season we have to get the recruitment right.
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'Alan will definitely be in charge for the Villa game and we will make our decisions as we bring people in. I am not going to say he is definitely in charge until the end of the season but if that was the case it would be fine as far as we are concerned, because we are concerned about getting the right long term hire rather than scrabbling to bring someone in quickly.'
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