U's confirm Canaries bid for Halford

COLCHESTER United boss Phil Parkinson confirmed last night that Norwich City have expressed an interest in signing Greg Halford.However, the U's manager remains confident that he can retain his current squad, without any big-name departures, before the transfer window closes again at the end of this month.

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United boss Phil Parkinson confirmed last night that Norwich City have expressed an interest in signing Greg Halford.

However, the U's manager remains confident that he can retain his current squad, without any big-name departures, before the transfer window closes again at the end of this month.

Parkinson stressed that it would require “silly money” to prise any of his stars away from Layer Road, especially as the team are currently riding high on top of League One.


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But that “silly money” might equate to the potential transfer figure of around £1m, that Norwich are allegedly prepared to pay for securing the services of England under-20 international Halford.

The Canaries have money to spend, following the sale of striker Dean Ashton to West Ham for £7.25m over the weekend.

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“Norwich have made an inquiry about Greg [Halford],” revealed Parkinson last night.

“But it's no more than the sort of inquiry I've made for players in the past. There's been no firm offer, and it would take silly money to prise any of my players away.

“I've always been keen to hold onto my players, not least because I think we have a great chance of really achieving something this season,” added Parkinson.

Chelmsford-born Halford, a successful product of the youth system at Layer Road, starred for England under-20s in the Toulon Tournament in France last summer, and has been in prolific form for the U's this campaign.

The 21-year-old has scored eight goals this season, from his position on the right flank, and has also assisted in 13 goals for his team-mates.

Norwich manager Nigel Worthington has been plotting the progress of Halford, as indeed have a whole host of clubs, including Premiership outfits Manchester United, Newcastle, Tottenham and West Ham.

Worthington said: “We do like the player [Greg Halford]. And yes, we have made an inquiry, and that's as far as it has gone.”

In addition to his current role on the right wing, Halford has proved his versatility by playing up front, at right-back and in central midfield. He has already made 111 league and cup appearances for the Essex club.

U's fans will be hoping that the Canaries pursue their other interest in Cardiff striker Cameron Jerome, rather than focusing on Halford. Ashton's departure has certainly put the priority on finding a new striker at Carrow Road.

Colchester travel to Cheltenham for an LDV Vans Trophy southern area semi-final this evening, and Parkinson confirmed that Halford would be in the squad.

The U's are on a remarkable current run of 16 wins from their last 18 fixtures. They climbed to the top of the table with a 2-1 success over Port Vale last Saturday.

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