According to today’s Sun on Sunday (May 13th, page 63), Norwich City are considering selling Nelson Oliveira to fund a move for Sheffield Wednesday Striker, Jordan Rhodes.
It seems as though the silly season is well and truly upon us.
I don’t doubt for a moment that Stuart Webber is thinking about selling Nelson Oliveira. The Portuguese firebrand has flattered to deceive, failed to deliver, didn’t come up with the goods, whatever you want to call it this season, scoring just 8 goals in 41 appearances for the Canaries.
He was the subject of plenty of late summer speculation last year, with Reading supposedly having tabled a £8m bid. That bid was rejected and then Daniel Farke benched Nelson for the first game of the season away at Fulham.
With City losing 0-1, he came off the bench with Wes Hoolahan and between them they conjured up a last minute equaliser. You will remember Nelson’s fiery reaction, ripping off his shirt and showing it to Farke on the touchline.
That earned him a two-game internal ban from Farke before Nelson apologised and was welcomed back into the camp. He was then later dropped in March due to a lack of work rate.
There had been further talk of bids from Wolves and Derby in January but City stuck with their man, despite Nelson struggling to find where he’d left his goalscoring boots.
After scoring a late consolation goal at Brentford in December 22nd, he then only managed to score once more in the remaining 22 games of the season, that rather lucky 30-yard strike at Wolves.
However, although he’s failed to deliver this term, he has a certain value, after scoring 15 in 31 in his first season at Norwich.
Would we sell him to fund a permanent move for Jordan Rhodes though?
Absolutely no chance.
Rhodes had a very good scoring record in the Championship with Blackburn and joined Middlesbrough in the January of their last promotion season for £9m. He scored 6 goals as ‘Boro went on to promotion but made just 4 appearances in the Premier League before being loaned to Sheffield Wednesday.
That eventually became a transfer for a similar sort of fee in July 2017 but he’s managed a grand total of only 31 appearances in two seasons, scoring just 10 goals.
He’s reported to be earning £40k per week.
In what world Norwich City currently have the funds to pay him that sort of salary and Rhodes would be prepared to accept less, even half that, I don’t know.
I think you can safely say this is not going to happen on a permanent basis.
Norwich have been linked with Jordan Rhodes since he started scoring for fun at Huddersfield but I think that boat has sailed now. He’s 28, going to be 29 next February, so any transfer is likely to be his best and last chance of a big contract, not that he hasn’t got one already.
There is though, a more than reasonable chance that Wednesday would be prepared to loan Rhodes out to get him off their wage bill, accepting that they would have to pay a large portion of his salary, in order to do so, according (again) to The Sun.
That would seem to be the best chance of this deal being done and could be what The Sun are getting at.
Stuart Webber has gone on record as saying that he sees loan players as useful to plug gaps until Norwich have a player of their own, most likely from the Academy, ready to play.
Adam Idah is 17 and looking like the real deal but is he ready for Championship football yet? Maybe not on a full-time basis, so he could get a loan to League One with a loan player coming in next season, assuming Oliveira is sold.
There’s a lot of “ifs and buts” here but it could be that if Rhodes is to end up at Carrow Road, it would be on a heavily subsidised loan.