x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Liverpool close in on Rodgers as Norwich City hold out on Lambert

Discussion in final stages at Anfield while Norwich City refuse the resignation of their coach, an Aston Villa target.

Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers should replace Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool.
Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers should replace Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool.

Two of the three promoted clubs who will spend a second term in the Premier League next season adopted contrasting stances yesterday regarding their sought-after managers.

Swansea City agreed a compensation package with Liverpool of between £4 million (Dh22.7m) and £5m for Brendan Rogers who is expected to be official confirmed as the Anfield club's new manager today. Norwich City, on the other hand, rejected the resignation of their manager, Paul Lambert, who has been strongly linked with the vacant manager's post at Aston Villa.

"The club regrets to confirm that Paul Lambert has offered his resignation from his position as Norwich City manager," a statement read.

"We have fought hard to keep Paul at Norwich and have not accepted his resignation whilst discussions with another club are taking place. However, whatever happens, we want to place on record our sincere gratitude for everything Paul has done for the club over the last three fantastic seasons."

It is understood Villa made an official approach to Norwich on Wednesday to talk to Lambert. There had been reports of a fallout of the denial of that opportunity.

However, in a carefully worded statement, Norwich appeared to play those rumours down.

"Discussions with Paul throughout the last few days have been professional and amicable," the statement continued.

"Paul has already earned his place in Norwich City Football Club history and, no matter what happens, will always have a friendly welcome at Carrow Road."

Lambert still looks likely to depart if Villa pay Norwich a substantial compensation fee. It is likely Lambert's back room staff - his assistant Ian Culverhouse, the former Norwich defender, and head of football operations Gary Karsa - would follow him out of Carrow Road.

Malky Mackay, the Cardiff City manager, and Steve Bruce, the former Norwich defender who was fired by Sunderland this season, could be in contention to replace Lambert.

Darren Eadie, the former Norwich winger believes the club must take their time in the appointment.

"Norwich are on a stable footing, they don't need to rush," Eadie told TalkSPORT.

"The new manager needs a little bit of experience, but most of all he needs to be keen.

"Those kind of people seem to get the best out of the sort of players we've got at Norwich at the moment. They must be driven and want to succeed."

"I would go for another up-and-coming manager. There are a lot of people who have been around the block a few times and haven't succeeded."

Liverpool's deal for Rodgers looks more straightforward and they are expected to tie up the loose ends on the deal today.

Reports in Wales suggest Rodgers will take assistant performance analyst Chris Davies and performance consultant Glen Driscoll with him to Anfield. The new manager's first job will be to assess the squad he has inherited and start making plans for the summer transfer window, which is complicated slightly by Euro 2012.

Swansea have already started discussions over their hunt for a new manager.

Chairman Huw Jenkins has vowed the Swans would move swiftly to find a successor to the man who guided them to the Premier League.

Brighton boss Gus Poyet, Blackpool's Ian Holloway, Birmingham's Chris Hughton and former Denmark international Michael Laudrup have all been linked with the vacancy at the Liberty Stadium.

The BBC reported last night that Graeme Jones, the Wigan Athletic assistant manager, is the clear favourite for the role.

Jones spent a successful spell with Swansea from 2007 to 2009 as an assistant manager under Roberto Martinez.

Rodgers' exit had also raised question marks over whether the club record £6.8million signing of Gylfi Sigurdsson would go ahead.

The Iceland international made a huge impression on loan at the Liberty from Hoffenheim during the second half of last season, and Swansea announced earlier this week that they had agreed a fee and terms with the player.

And it is understood that the club still expect the 22 year old to have a medical and complete his permanent move to the Welsh side in the coming days, despite the uncertainty over the managerial situation.

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