Prized asset Maddison looks likely to stay with Canaries amid chaos of deadline day
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Deadline day has arrived and there is one player Norwich City supporters will be keeping an ear out for today: James Maddison.
City's prized playmaker had been mentioned in various gossip columns before the January transfer window had even opened – but looks likely to still be a Canaries player tomorrow.
Various Premier League clubs have been linked with the in-form England Under-21 international this month, including West Ham, Leicester and Manchester City.
Liverpool and Tottenham have also been mentioned, although their interest dates back to before City signed him from Coventry in January 2016 – swooping late on deadline day.
The initial £2.5million deal, with a series of add-ons and a sell-on clause for the Sky Blues, looks to have been brilliant business secured by then manager Alex Neil and chief executive David McNally.
While Maddison did not come to the fore until after that duo's exit, he is now being talked about as being worth in the region of £20m in the transfer market – and a subsequent fair chunk to Coventry.
Championship rivals Fulham, for example, reportedly turned down an £18m offer from West Ham for their creator-in-chief Tom Cairney earlier this week. National reports suggest the wealthy Cottagers want closer to £30m for the 27-year-old Scotland international.
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While City do not quite have the same financial security, their cost-cutting and transfer business have secured the club's financial situation, with Maddison also under contract until 2022. At just 21 years old, the attacker also has a much greater potential resale value than Cairney.
So should one of the big boys put in a late call to sporting director Stuart Webber this evening – in the hope of avoiding an auction against top-flight rivals – they will certainly need plenty of cash in the bank.
The report of a £12m bid from West Ham last week is believed to have been both false and way short of the Canaries' valuation of their nine-goal star player.
If there is any chance of Maddison leaving at this late stage, it also seems likely that a loan return for the rest of the season will be required. If none of that materialises before 11pm, then City can make sure they get the best out of their top scorer, and worry about his future in the summer.