Holt’s Tactics Seal New Deal
Somewhere in deepest, darkest Norwich, Grant Holt and his agent will be high-fiving, drinking champagne, and toasting a job well done.
That is because the 31-year-old’s desire to squeeze more money out of the club has worked, and he has signed a new three-year deal with Norwich City.
I can appreciate that Holt was keen for a longer deal than the two years Norwich were offering, but, at 31, he is no spring chicken, and the club have every right to be cautious about offering contracts to players of that age.
I can imagine the conversation with his agent now: the former Shrewsbury man will have been told his stock has never been – and may never be - higher than after his debut season in the Premier League.
He bagged 17 goals in all competitions, as Norwich defied the online gambling odds, to finish comfortably in mid-table, and was also rumoured to be close to an England call-up.
He will never be in a better bargaining position when it comes to negotiating a new contract. He also knows that, at 31, this will be his last big payday - so when the club said ‘no’, the simple job of requesting a transfer raised the stakes. His agent will have done the rest, touting his name to all and sundry.
With West Ham and Aston Villa rumoured to be interested – though it appears a move was never really in the offing – Norwich have caved in and offered Holt the three-year deal and the “security” he desired.
The whole incident leaves a sour taste in the mouth. After all, Norwich were the club who plucked Holt from a career in the lower divisions – he did not get them to the Barclays Premier League on his own.
By turning on the Canaries in such a manner shows a lack of respect and loyalty for what they have done for him, but perhaps reflects the influence of agents and money at the top level of the game.
Holt will do well to match his achievements of last year – second season syndrome, and all that. But with his big fat new contract under his arm, I doubt he will really care.