The Scotsman newspaper today claimed that midfielder Stephen Hughes has become Bryan Gunn's fifth signing of the summer – agreeing a three-year deal “last night”.
And on a reported ?7,000 a week, to boot.
The paper quoted the player's agent at length; suggesting that the 26-year-old had decided that the time was now ripe for a return south of the border and that Norwich's ambition matched that of his own.
“There was a lot of interest in Stephen and we are now just happy to have concluded the deal,” said the lad's Mr 10 Per Cent, Tom Callaghan, told the newspaper.
“Stephen talked to Norwich last week and asked for some time to think over the offer. I said then that it wasn't dead in the water.
“To be fair to them, they were patient and once Stephen had thought it through he saw it as the way ahead.
“Norwich may have been relegated last season, but clearly they are an ambitious side and they are looking at getting back into the Championship as swiftly as possible.”
Today's news – if confirmed – will certainly ensure that the Canary chief is not short of midfield options; having already bolted both Owain Tudur Jones and Matt Gill into his central midfield in the expectation that both Sammy Clingan and Darel Russell will not be long for these parts.
Clingan is still expected to join Coventry City in the none-too distant future, while Russell has been linked to Premiership Burnley – as and when the Clarets return from their own pre-season tour to America.
Should both be all-but done, it would then, of course, free up Gunn's hand further financially – particularly if Clingan's exit came with a reported ?650,000 cheque in tow.
Hughes had been expected to join Gunn's old club Aberdeen after his current Well contract expired this summer. That, at least, was the theory according to Dons boss Mark McGhee who had managed the one-time Leicester City star at Fir Park.
“I'm fairly hopeful,” said McGhee, speaking at the beginning of the month before Norwich's interest hardened in the 5ft 11in midfielder.
“So far Stephen's options that he's been given by his agent and by clubs don't really jump out at him.”
McGhee added: “I think we have an advantage in the sense that he knows us and he likes working with us.”
Hughes was also linked with a switch to Hearts, in Edinburgh, only for a return to English football to apparently win the day.
It all promises to be a lively few days on the transfer front with Gunn still expected to roll out ex-Preston North End winger Simon Whaley in the next 24 hours once the formalities of his medical are complete.
Arran Lee-Barrett has also returned to the club that first nurtured his teenage talents as Gunn both covers for Declan Rudd's England Under-19 absence and bolts in a more experienced No2 keeper in behind the yet-to-be-seen Michael Theoklitos.
The City chief also has big decisions to make over a clutch of triallists – all of whom made an impression on last week's tour to Scotland.
Goran Maric, the Serbian striker who grabbed two goals north of the border, could prove a cut-price answer to Norwich's obvious No9 needs as he looks to step into English football on a free transfer this summer, whilst six-foot three-inch Danish centre-half Jens Berthel Askou is another free agent with an invite back to Colney for a further week's trial.
Both could, in theory, feature in Saturday's Carrow Road clash with a Manchester United XI when Gunn's 2009-2010 thinking ought to start solidifying.
He also has a decision to make on Canary 'old boy' Paul McVeigh. In what is becoming an increasingly competitive midfield arena with Matty Pattison, Wes Hoolahan and the teenage Tom Adeyemi all looking for a space alongside the Tudur Jones' and the Gills, so Gunn may have to think long and hard about handing McVeigh a new deal – particularly if he now has both Hughes and Whaley to add to the mix.
For now, Adeyemi may have to settle for a night out at Dereham as Ressie boss Ian Crook takes his young charges the short distance down the A47 for tonight's latest pre-season warm-up.
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