Daniel Farke braced for mega money James Maddison bid
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
James Maddison is destined for the Premier League - the only question is when.
Norwich City's midfield maestro is expected to be fit for the majority of pre-season, after scans earlier this week allayed fears he had suffered serious knee ligament damage in the Championship finale at Sheffield Wednesday.
That will do nothing to stem the expected torrent of transfer speculation touting the £20m-rated starlet with a top-flight exit.
Head coach Daniel Farke insists interest in City's prized asset is a sign of his meteoric progress.
'Before I came here we spoke about this young lad who had not been involved much, with no starts in the line up,' he said.
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'What shall we do with him? We had several experienced players, like Wes Hoolahan and Alex Pritchard.
'The first thoughts were I have to send him on loan, but I wanted to see him in pre-season.
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'From day one, and I don't want to praise him too much, but I could see something in him. I tried to support him and felt he could be really outstanding and special for me.
'You can only give him big compliments, not only because he has had an excellent season with 15 goals and many assists but also because he was so grown up in his whole behaviour and commitment.
'For his first season at this level he proved he is an unbelievable talent, not only as a footballer but a person.
'When this comes together, the technical side and the personality, then there is a chance for a really great career.'
Alex Tettey pledged his future to the Canaries and Tom Trybull signed a new contract during the second half of the season.
The pending arrival of Kenny McLean from Aberdeen this summer is another signal City's top brass do not intend to be caught short.
'I learnt to be realistic in this business,' said Farke. 'We know there will be interest from bigger clubs with more money, in some of our players.
'You can speak about James Maddison and I would like to keep him here beyond the summer.
'He has a long term contract so we can say, 'No' or there might not be an offer but if there is interest that is a sign of his development and our ability to create a value. We have a player who is worth many millions of pounds.
'We have Alex and Tom both signing new deals.
'Mario Vrancic has shown how much he has adapted. We have James, plus Kenny coming in and younger lads like Louis Thompson and Ben Godfrey.
'In this area of the pitch we are not too bad and particularly in the holding midfielder we feel we are done with our planning.'