Beyond the fanfare on deadline day is the spirit of football
- Credit: SNS Group
With the transfer window closed once again, David Freezer analyses another dramatic deadline day for Norwich City supporters.
The hype and hysteria of transfer deadline days may have become a bit much to bear at times – but the spirit of football still remains at the heart of the madness.
Deadline days are occasions for the optimists amongst us, for supporters of clubs across the country who to dare to dream of a brighter future for their club.
Much like the opening day of the season, when the hopes of a successful season have yet to be dented by disappointment and drama, deadline day open the window of possibility.
Before Sky Sports News 'slam' that window shut in a burst of fanfare which is symptomatic of the continued Americanisation of British television, that is. Sorry, back to the football.
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Norwich City supporters experienced the highs and lows of deadline day this time around, as they have plenty of times in the past.
Early in the day they had two juicy rumours to get their teeth into. West Brom midfielder Graham Dorrans for around £4million and a bid of £2m for Cardiff City winger Craig Noone were the latest stories doing the rounds.
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The Dorrans transfer eventually evolved into an exchange deal involving City left-back Martin Olsson heading to the West Midlands. It was a prospective deal which was getting plenty of supporters excited.
Scotland international Dorrans is a skilful midfielder who has already proved himself as a top player in the Championship with West Brom and, at the age of 27, still has plenty of time on his side. Olsson, on the other hand, has often been linked with a return to the Premier League and has his international career with Sweden to protect. With Javier Garrido waiting in the wings, few City fans seemed to have too much of an issue with the defender's impending exit.
While that bubbled under the surface, as all parties reportedly negotiated terms, the deal for Noone started to slip away.
Media reports in Wales suggested Cardiff were keen to reduce their wage bill but had told the Canaries they wanted closer to £5million for the former Brighton winger.
It seemed that price was too dear for City and word soon filtered through that the Canaries had pulled out of negotiations.
Finally there was some news confirmed by City officials though, at around 9pm, after a full day of supporters waiting for the club's first signing of the transfer window.
It was not to be though, with news of Kyle Lafferty's loan move to Turkish top-flight side Caykur Rizespor until the end of the season confirmed.
To some fans, that was like a red rag to a bull.After a full day of waiting, with just two hours of the transfer window left, City had allowed one of their summer signings to leave on loan. Fortunately, that anger subsided for many supporters pretty quickly, as news of Tony Andreu's impending signing was announced by Hamilton Academical. The Scottish Premiership club confirmed they had accepted a bid from the Canaries and that the French attacking midfielder was set for a medical. That snippet of news was soaked up like water poured on a dry sponge by users of our live blog at www.pinkun.com – but the frustration was only just about to begin.
As the late hour began to leave some supporters increasingly short of patience, a message confirming Andreu had left Hamilton was posted on the Accies' official Twitter account, but still no confirmation from Carrow Road. The nerves really started to jangle as the 11pm deadline passed but, as previous deadline days have taught us, there are always some late deals confirmed after the window has closed.
With the announcement of Andreu and Dorrans as Norwich players very much still possible, intended bedtimes were being pushed back further and further.
But then disaster struck, the Olsson deal had collapsed – supposedly after the defender demanded a relegation release clause.
West Brom claimed yesterday that Olsson and his agent didn't make it to The Hawthorns in time for his medical to be completed, but the situation was far from clear at 11.30pm on deadline day.
Had Andreu fallen through as well though? With City still yet to confirm the transfer, supporters were all of a sudden faced with the prospect of no new signing to get excited about. But then finally, just before 12.30am, the moment we had all waited for arrived as Andreu was confirmed by City.
Not a moment too soon either – it's time to get on with the football again.