Norwich City’s England keeper John Ruddy agrees new long-term Carrow Road deal
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Norwich City keeper John Ruddy has signed a new four-year deal with the Canaries.
The England international will now remain at Carrow Road until at least the summer of 2017, with the club having the option of an additional year after Ruddy agreed to a contract extension.
Ruddy was heavily linked with a summer move to Premier League title contenders Chelsea but the 27-year-old is happy to repay Norwich's faith after his career had stalled at Everton following a succession of loan moves.
'I was in a bit of a no-man's land before I joined the club, and they took a gamble on me,' he said. 'Thankfully I think it's paid off for both sides and now I'm just looking to keep up my form going into the World Cup and get my name on that squad list. I've broken into the England squad while at Norwich, and without the opportunity they gave me I wouldn't have been anywhere near it.
'It has been a fantastic journey. Its not just the stature of the club and the league they play in now but the bits and pieces that are going on around that – the training ground, the ground itself, we are progressing year in, year out and the players we have brought in each season is all part of the same process. We definitely have the strongest squad since I've been here and we just need to turn those performances into points.'
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Ruddy was flattered by Chelsea's reported interest but playing regular football is a bigger incentive.
'The speculation that happened in the summer with Chelsea, although it was flattering it was always in the back of my mind that I am at a very good club with solid foundations,' Ruddy told the club's official site. 'To be playing week in, week out is something you need to do as a footballer and a goalkeeper. You can not go from one game to another sitting on the bench and then playing again. It doesn't work like that. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Norwich. The players I have worked with, the staff I have worked with have all been fully supportive and fantastic. I was more than happy to commit my future to the club.'
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Canaries' chief Chris Hughton was keen to keep the 27-year-old in Norfolk for the long term.
'I think everyone knows there was some interest in him during the summer so we are really delighted he has signed a new contract,' he told the club's official site. 'It is one he thoroughly deserved. He has now become a regular in that England squad. It was a difficult season for him last year. I thought he was excellent at the start and then he had the injury. What we saw is someone who worked incredibly hard in the summer and he has been excellent again. His ambitions now will be first and foremost to do well this season and then he has England. He has had that experience of working his way up through the divisions and he has continued that progress. He is a big player for us. It speaks volumes for him as an individual and us as a club and what we are endeavouring to do that we have made improvements to the squad and I think John has recognised that.'