City supporters can be forgiven this afternoon for picking through the words of West Ham United's new owners very carefully as ex-Canary Youth product Robert Green continues on his quest to make that England No1 slot his own.
Despite the odd first-half flap, the 29-year-old Hammers keeper walked away from his first, full international start on Saturday with a clean sheet to his name in that 4-0 stroll over Group Six rivals Kazakhstan.
Green is now expected to keep his place for Wednesday night's Wembley clash with genuine World Cup minnows Andorra – hardly a testing shop window for a player regularly linked to switches away from Upton Park, principally to one of the two North London clubs.
Chief executive Scott Duxbury admitted last summer that there was a 'mechanism' within Green's current, five-year deal that ensured his contract position would be reviewed this summer. And with both Arsenal and Spurs reported to be in the market for a new keeper, events could yet take an interesting turn or two.
For example, the question now is whether the Hammers' new owners – a collection of Icelandic banks brought together under the guise of 'Claret and Blue Holdings' and led principally by the bank Straumur – will have the inclination to offer England's prospective full-time No1 keeper the kind of wages enjoyed by team-mates Lucas Neill and Scott Parker.
Or whether prudence will dictate that they listen to offers this summer – and thereby raise Norwich's hopes of finally cashing in on the sell-on clause installed deep within that ?2 million switch to the East End.
Andrew Bernhardt, the club's new non-executive chairman, today insisted that the jobs of boss Gianfranco Zola and his No2 Steve Clarke were safe – and that there would be fresh investment in the team.
However, given that the four-strong consortium of Icelandic banks only find themselves now owning a Premiership football club courtesy of the ?100 million facility they granted the club's former owner Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, the feeling remains that the generous wage terms granted the Neills and the Parkers will be a thing of the past – those kind of good times have come to an end.
The Hammers will cut their cloth according to what they can realistically afford – potentially ruling out a fat new deal for Green.
Prudence appeared to be the new watchword at Upton Park.
“I can assure fans we will sanction investment in new players, but all within the parameters of sensible budgeting based on revenues generated by West Ham United,” Bernhardt told the club's official website as news of the change of ownership broke.
“It will be my job to help facilitate this continued progress on the pitch, while ensuring the club's success is built on a strong financial footing. We have an initial two-year plan which includes improving the infrastructure at the club and we will be getting to work on this as soon as the new board is appointed.”
As for Green himself, he was happy enough with his first start in an England shirt – a long-held dream had been finally realised.
“It's been an ambition and a dream and to get it done and have the memories of winning is more than pleasing,” he told reporters afterwards.
“It was a difficult game, but one we've come through with a good result. Maybe not the greatest of performances, but one we'll take,” he continued. “We kept chances down to a minimum, but we knew there would be a storm to ride and we've done that.”
That success made it six wins out of six for England; a seventh surely beckons on Wednesday night.
“Coming away with seven wins out of seven is the next focus and if we win on Wednesday we know we will be a long way ahead of the rest of the group and we'll know that we've done our job over the last ten days,” said Green.
Closer to home and if City boss Bryan Gunn ever had any interest in Crewe right-back Danny Woodwards that ended today after the 25-year-old agreed a two-year deal with MK Dons.
Out-of-contract this summer and a free agent, the one-time Exeter youngster was briefly linked to both Leeds United and Norwich before being won over by Roberto Di Matteo's charms.
“It's a nice stadium, I've seen the fans here and they're a good crowd, they seem to be behind the team and that helps,” said Woodwards on his arrival at the Stadium MK. “I spoke to a few people before signing with the club and they all just said good things – I want to be a part of that and everything seems right.”
As for reports of ex-Chelsea keeper Mark Bosnich being Norfolk-bound on the basis of one lunch Down Under with City first team coach Ian Crook, club sources were today playing down such talk.
The expectation is that it will all prove nothing more exciting than that – a lunch.