German gems - Five potential Norwich City transfer targets
- Credit: PA
Norwich City's new head coach Daniel Farke and sporting director Stuart Webber plan to fine tune the Canaries' transfer strategy this week.
Farke officially starts his new role at Carrow Road on June 1 and top of the agenda for the pair is bringing in reinforcements to build a squad to compete for Championship promotion.
Webber sanctioned the departure of seven senior players towards the end of last season, including a clutch of defensive options in the likes of John Ruddy, Ryan Bennett, Seb Bassong and Michael Turner.
City's sporting director has made it clear he plans to make full use of the loan market and some astute free agent purchases, but Farke's arrival from Borussia Dortmund, and Webber's keen interest in German football from his time at Huddersfield, suggest that is likely to be another profitable market this summer
Webber played a key role in enticing the likes of Michael Hefele, Elias Kachunga and Colin Quaner to his previous club, and all three have played a part in the Terriers' run to the Championship play-off final on Monday under another German-inspired Webber appointment, David Wagner.
Hefele was part of the Dynamo Dresden squad that won the third tier in Germany in 2016 before making the move to England. Kachunga, who scored in both Championship wins over Norwich last season, completed a permanent move from Ingoldstadt in March while Quaner arrived in the January window from FC Union Berlin.
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With that in mind, we look at five of the stand out performers outside the Bundesliga's top league over these past 12 months who may be on Norwich's radar. (market valuations taken from www.transfermarkt.co.uk)
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1. Jakob Busk Jensen - Former Danish Under-21 goalkeeper. The 23-year-old established himself as FC Union Berlin's number one over the Bundesliga 2 run-in. Made 22 appearances as Berlin finished in fifth place. Out of contract this summer. Decent pedigree after coming through the ranks at 12-time Danish champions FC Copenhagen. Current market value of £680.000.
2. Phillipp Mwene - FC Kaiserlautern right-back. The 23-year-old Austrian made 34 league appearances for the club last season. Kaiserlautern finished a lowly 13th in Bundesliga 2 but only promoted Hannover 96 conceded fewer league goals. Contracted until 2019. Current market value of £595,000.
3. Tim Heubach - FC Kaiserlautern centre-back. Team mate of Mwene's and made 26 league appearances for the Red Devils last season. The 29-year-old, 6ft 3in defender started his career at Borussia Monchengladbach. Current market value of £425,000.
4. Kaan Ayhan - Former Schalke prospect who can operate at centre-back, right-back or as a holding midfielder. The 22-year-old Turkish international made 22 appearances for Fortuna Dusseldorf last season. One year left on his current deal. Current market value of £850,000.
5. Pascal Köpke - Young striker with FC Erzgebirge Aue. The 21-year-old scored 10 goals in 33 appearances in a struggling side last season. Köpke has pace, can operate on either flank and down the middle, and you would feel is only going to improve after a breakthrough season. Under contract until 2020. Current market value of £850,000.