by Thomas Rooney
The next few weeks are very important for Norwich City. After the revelations surrounding Peter Cullum and his £20m offer, the club has responded by saying that they will require £56m if he is to become the majority shareholder at Carrow Road. Since then a ‘spokesperson’ of Mr Cullum has stated that there is clearly a ‘difference in valuation’ of the club.
I’ve got mixed feelings on all of this. I am delighted that someone is willing to invest in Norwich City – we have been crying out for it for some time now. My initial reaction was for the club to accept the offer and take what they can – £20m is not to be sniffed at. Especially when you consider that Cullum specifically stated he would want a lot of his money to be spent on improving the squad.
However, the club has had their say on proceedings by stating that it would cost £56m for someone to take control of the club and inject £20m to enhance the playing squad. I do admire this ‘if you’re going to do it, do it properly’ approach from the club. They are, I guess, testing Cullum’s commitment to Norwich City. It is now time for the club and Cullum to sit down and discuss proceedings. There is a concern with this though as talks between the two have broken down before, who is to say they won’t again?
This time though the talks would be public and the club would be widely criticised if they ‘scared off’ a man worth £1.7billion who is willing to invest millions of pound into the club. A quick word on the whole story becoming public – this must have been Mr Cullum’s doing. I don’t think the club would want it all out in the open. Not at this stage. Cullum obviously wanted to let the fans know what he was offering so it made it very hard for Delia and co to turn it down. Like I have said though – fair play to the club for their firm stance.
My overriding concern about this whole saga – no matter what the outcome – is going to affect Glenn Roeder and his players. Even before the Cullum story was released, this was still a huge few weeks for Norwich City. We must bring players in quickly and if we are relying on the Cullum money to do this, we could be waiting a while yet.
The priority must still be to build a squad for next season, because let’s be honest if you were to bet on the Championship – you wouldn’t have Norwich down as favourites for promotion with the current squad.
I think it is in the best interests of everyone concerned that the matter is resolves fairly quickly. If it is prolonged, it will affect Roeder’s transfer plans, the patience of the fans and potentially the moral of the players – they will be unsettled by the uncertainty surrounding what role they will be playing next season.
Roeder needs to know how much he has to spend this summer, because with pre-season looming, time is running out for him to get the players he has targeted. Perhaps there are a few lined up to sign, it’s just a case of waiting for the Cullum money? That’s probably being a little optimistic, but Roeder must have known about the offer and would have presumably planned for the potential budget he could have.
Like I have said, it is a crucial time for the club in terms of the short and long term. The short term referring to buying much needed players for the up and coming season and the long term referring to the change of roles in the board room, the overall financial stability of the club and our chances of a return to the Premier League. Rather exciting isn’t it?