No bids for Robbie Brady, insists Norwich City chief Alex Neil
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Alex Neil has made it clear Robbie Brady will remain a Norwich City player until a potential suitor meets the Canaries' valuation.
Neil confirmed there had been no firm bids for the Republic of Ireland international in the opening days of the January window, ahead of his pre-match FA Cup press call on Friday.
Brady has again been touted with a number of Premier League clubs, plus Championship duo Newcastle United and Aston Villa, after a feverish summer window where no club was prepared to match City's valuation of the 24-year-old.
'No, there is no firm offer and until someone does make one it is all just hearsay,' said Neil, speaking at Colney. 'The amount of time you spend speaking to agents and people who allegedly can get deals done and nothing materialises pretty much wastes large parts of your day. The fact is for every player we will have a valuation we regard them in and if that is not met, then they won't be leaving. It really is as simple as that. When you are working on outs in a window then it is dictated by others. When you are working on ins, then you are in control. You are the one making the offer, pursuing a player and trying to get a deal done. When you are working on players leaving a lot of the time they are in control.'
Neil reiterated he has to generate funds to bring in his own targets but none of his squad will be offloaded on the cheap.
'It depends on the player and how highly we regard them,' he said. 'What you tend to find is the ones we are quite happy to move on no-one perhaps wants to take them and the ones you deem your best players everyone wants to buy them. What you would like to do is shift on the ones who are not going to play to make space and generate cash to inject into the team, but bearing in mind you want to strengthen the team. The whole purpose of each window is making sure by the end (of the window) your squad, and team in particular, is stronger than it was.'
Neil opted not to confirm whether Brentford have made a firm approach for Sergi Canos, who has struggled to make any impact since his summer move from Liverpool and had a successful season-long loan at Griffin Park last season.
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'We have had approaches from clubs for our players but until there is anything really concrete happens it is difficult to go into any detail,' said Neil. 'The one thing I will say is, to go back to the earlier point, sometimes you have to strengthen the squad by selling players and that can come from Sergi or anybody in the squad. I am not trying to dip a toe there and lead to something. The point is when you are trying to generate cash you cannot just say I will only take bids for one or two lads. You have to take everything into account.'
Brady is suspended for Southampton's FA Cup visit to Carrow Road on Saturday. Neil confirmed Louis Thompson (pelvis) will also miss out and Graham Dorrans is set for two months on the sidelines with knee ligament damage.
'The pleasing thing is for Graham he has been to see a specialist and he doesn't require surgery,' said Neil. 'Timeline-wise we are probably talking just over the best part of two months. To be honest, that is probably the best case scenario. Louis is not quite ready but making better progress. It feels like a long time and based on the injury it is a long time. Some players can recover quicker than others. Unfortunately for Louis it has took longer than he has hoped. He is out on the grass, he is getting himself moving again so I am hoping it won't be too much longer now. In terms of the other lads coming out of Derby we are fine.'
Matt Jarvis makes his first senior squad of the season after knee surgery but there is no place for James Maddison, who is back from a loan stint at Aberdeen.
'He trained with the squad today and the other two days we have been in as well, however, he is not in the squad,' said Neil. 'He has been up in Scotland and everyone is aware we have a lot of lads here, the squad is a big one, and I just feel those here who have been working extremely hard it would be unfair on them to park them for this game and put James straight in. I think we have some other guys not playing much recently who deserve to be involved.
'Matt will be in the squad (for Southampton), which is obviously different for him. He is at a stage where he can get involved in the game now.'