Norwich City have endured a mixed start to the summer, with two players coming in to strengthen Dean Smith’s side.
However, one of those signings in Isaac Hayden is already on the sidelines and doesn’t look set to be ready for the start of the season, a real blow for the ex-Aston Villa manager who would ideally want a couple of fresh faces in his starting lineup ahead of their opening day fixture against Cardiff City.
The Bluebirds, meanwhile, have plenty of new signings at their disposal, though the Canaries will be encouraged by the fact it will take Steve Morison’s side a considerable amount of time to gel together.
Quiz: Can you remember the score the last time Norwich City played at these 26 stadiums?
They will also be boosted by the arrival of marquee signing Gabriel Sara, with many Norwich supporters hoping he can make just as much of an impact as Emi Buendia did during his time at Carrow Road.
Another positive is the fact they have managed to retain the majority of their squad from last season and though many would argue they need a shake-up following their relegation, keeping those players from last season may give them the best chance of getting back to the Premier League at the first time of asking.
For now though, they will be focusing on the short term with a trip to the Welsh capital coming up this weekend. Ahead of this tie, we take a look at some of the latest headlines involving the club with the new league season approaching.
Kone on their radar
Norwich are keen on bringing CF Montreal midfielder Ismael Kone to Carrow Road this summer, according to an update from Fabrizio Romano.
As per the same journalist, officials at the club jetted out to Washington in a bid to convince the 20-year-old to sign on with the Canaries, though the player’s stance on a potential move to Norfolk is unclear at this stage.
With Hayden currently on the sidelines and Pierre Lees-Melou securing a move to France last week, they are in need of more options in the middle of the park and could potentially get this deal over the line quickly if the player is open to joining.
Already having two caps to his name for Canada, he’s a player national team manager John Herdman has high hopes for and he looks set to continue winning more international appearances considering he’s been a regular starter in the MLS during the 2022 season.
The Canaries’ boss believes his side have enough creativity to be successful and will be a match for any second-tier sides, speaking to the Eastern Daily Press.
They were unable to get themselves on the scoresheet during their last two pre-season games against Celtic and Hibernian, a potential concern with the Canaries needing a considerable amount of firepower if they are to challenge for promotion during this upcoming campaign.
West Bromwich Albion were one side that struggled in front of goal last season despite managing to remain reasonably solid at the back – and that cost them their chance of securing a top-six finish.
These two games, however, are in contrast to some of the Norfolk outfit’s other games with the first-team scoring three each against Marseille and Cambridge United. And Smith is confident going into this weekend.
He said: “Fitness wise I am happy with where the team is. Creativity wise, we will be okay.
“We created enough chances against Marseille. Cambridge, we created enough chances and we will create enough chances. I am quite confident.
“We have a good squad of players. I think we will be a real challenge for anybody in the Championship this season and I am looking forward to it.”
Despite playing 80 minutes against Hibernian last weekend, Adam Idah is still three weeks behind where Smith wants him to be according to the latter who spoke to the club’s official media team.
This is a blow for the Canaries going into the new season, especially with the second-tier side potentially benefitting from as many attacking options as they can get after firing blanks in their previous two matches.
In fairness, they still have a decent number of options at their disposal with the likes of Jordan Hugill, Teemu Pukki, Josh Sargent and Onel Hernandez all able to play up top.
Idah is certainly a promising player though and the Republic of Ireland international could become a valuable goalscoring asset as he prepares to take the step down to the second tier.
Speaking about his fitness at the weekend, Smith said: “Adam Idah’s gone and got 80 minutes today.
“You can tell from his game time in Scotland that he needs that as he’s about three weeks behind where we’d like him at the moment, but he’s had a long time off with injury.”
The club are currently in talks with potential investors as shareholder Michael Foulger looks to sell his shares in the club, according to Pinkun.
This was revealed at a fan event in Edinburgh – though it’s currently unclear whether the undisclosed investors are the group led by Milwaukee Brewers owner Mark Attanasio.
Members of this consortium were present at their final game of last season, but it remains to be seen whether they have sustained their interest.
At this stage though, it looks as though majority owners Delia Smith and Michael Wynn-Jones will be holding on to their stake with Foulger the only shareholder to have expressed a wish to sever ties with the club.