Norwich City’s Lewis Grabban says sorry for going AWOL at Rotherham ahead of Bournemouth reunion

Norwich City striker Lewis Grabban is not in contention to face old club Bournemouth in the Premier

Norwich City striker Lewis Grabban is not in contention to face old club Bournemouth in the Premier League this weekend. Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City striker Lewis Grabban has issued a public apology ahead of this weekend's Premier League reunion against old club Bournemouth for his disappearing act in last month's League Cup tie at Rotherham that earned the frontman a suspension and a fine.

Grabban was the subject of a public tug-of-war between City and his old club in the final throes of the transfer window after three failed bids from the Cherries, prior to a deadline day when he was strongly touted with a south-coast return.

The 27-year-old was suspended by Norwich in the midst of Bournemouth's chase, but has now sought to draw a line under the unsavoury episode ahead of the Cherries' visit.

'I've apologised to the manager, the staff and my fellow professionals for the situation that arose two weeks ago and for not being available for the game at Rotherham,' said Grabban, in a statement released on the club's official site late on Thursday night. 'I'd like to apologise to the club and most importantly the Norwich fans for my actions. Their support for me has been great since I joined and I really appreciate their passion for the club. The fans who travelled to Rotherham I especially apologise to.

'I've served a suspension and been fined, which I fully accept. Now I'm just determined to train hard and to let my football do the talking - and to do everything I can to help Norwich City do well.'

Cherries' boss, Eddie Howe, had earlier in the day made it clear he did not expect any hangover from the Grabban spat this coming weekend.

'I don't see why there should, to be honest,' said Howe. 'Certainly not from our side, and of course we hope from their side. I don't think its right to speculate or to talk about other people's players. We're competitors, we're two teams that were in the same league last year and fought a really good battle to try and get out of the Championship, and both sides were successful. And now we're going against each other in the Premier League it should be a good match.

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'They've made a decent start. It's always tough when you come up to a new league, to know how you're going to update to the challenges that you're faced with. But I think they proved, going to Sunderland and winning, and getting a good draw against Stoke, that they're going to be competitive this year, I've got no doubt about that. They've got a good squad of players and they're very well managed, that's obvious, so we're expecting a tough challenge. This game gives us a good marker of how far we have come.'