Versatile Arsenal midfielder Henri Lansbury spent much of last season on loan at Norwich City and now several national newspapers are suggesting that Lansbury will make the move to Carrow Road full time in a deal worth £1.5m. Something about the story doesn’t seem right considering Arsenal only recently turned down a £1.5m bid for the England U21 player. However, there is rarely smoke without fire, so there might just be something in it.
Paul Lambert had seemed to have completed his summer transfer business after acquiring seven new players. Lambert confirmed after the capture of Tottenham defender Kyle Naughton that was the end of his summer business. Certainly a strange stance to make if he thought Lansbury was going to be available. But of course it was always possible that there was a U-turn at some point from Arsenal that made Lansbury available. Lansbury certainly won’t be able to return to Carrow Road on loan, because Norwich already has two loan players from Premier League clubs.
The question that should be asked though is there any real credibility to the rumours? Paul Lambert is a known admirer and Lansbury will be wondering if he will find first-team football at Arsenal, so you can certainly see why the media might think that he is Norwich City bound. The 25 man squad may also restrict Norwich, but with certain players not receiving a squad number, a number of players under 21 and other players with an uncertain future at Norwich City, there does appear to be space for Lansbury, if a deal can be reached with the player.
From a personal point of view, I have felt that the signing of Henri Lansbury would be the icing on the cake for a productive summer in the transfer market. Some supporters would be concerned about what would happen if Wes Hoolahan was to get injured. Henri Lansbury has the creative spark that perhaps Norwich City’s other central midfielders don’t have. As many good managers state he offers something different and from that point of view, it would be no real surprise to see Lambert make a move. Furthermore, Lansbury is a player who can play in the hole behind the strikers as cover for or as an alternative to Hoolahan.
There is no doubt in my mind that Henri Lansbury would be an excellent addition to the Norwich City squad, even if he was back-up for Hoolahan initially. Some Arsenal supporters may think that Lansbury wouldn’t benefit from the move, if he isn’t going to be first-choice. However, Lansbury would be very much part of the squad and see his share of Premier League football. This is arguably a lot better for the player compared with playing reserve team football with Arsenal or being sent out on loan to the Championship again.
The player showed on loan last season what a good player he is and also that he has an eye for goal. Finding goals from multiple different sources could prove to be vitally important, if Norwich City is going to be successful in their return to Carrow Road. That all being said I fear that this link is a case of putting two and two together and coming up with five. I would love to see Lansbury back at Carrow Road, but I doubt it will happen, at least not in this transfer window. However, I would truly love to be proved wrong and Norwich City fans would welcome Lansbury back with open arms, if it was to happen.