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Deadline day passes quietly at Carrow Road

PUBLISHED: 10:42 02 September 2009 | UPDATED: 11:50 06 July 2010

The first transfer deadline of the new season came and went with barely a whisper at Carrow Road yesterday. One permanent departure, one on loan and a loan extension was the sum total of business, although manager Paul Lambert said last night he had come close to completing some business.

The first transfer deadline of the new season came and went with barely a whisper at Carrow Road yesterday.

One permanent departure, one on loan and a loan extension was the sum total of business, although manager Paul Lambert said last night he had come close to completing some business.

“We did, with a number of lads, but it is never quite easy to get people out and we don't have the money to go and spend here, there and everywhere,” he said. “We tried to get loans or swaps but it never materialised.

“When the loan window opens up again we will try and look at it again but it's not easy when you've just come in the job and you've only got a couple of weeks to go in the transfer window. There are about 12 lads who are new to the football club as it is, so it is not easy.”

Lambert has to balance the books, but says he was never under instruction to sell.

“The club never gave me any stipulation that I must get rid of one, two or three,” he said.

There were reports last night that Lambert had a bid rejected for Swindon winger Anthony McNamee, while sources in Scotland claimed Aberdeen were interested in City teenager Luke Daley.

Neither happened, and as the 5pm deadline passed it meant midfielder Wes Hoolahan and central defender Gary Doherty remain Norwich City players for the time being, despite speculation linking them with moves. Hoolahan had been linked with Swansea and Crystal Palace and Doherty with Malky Mackay's Watford.

Mackay did allow centre half Mike Williamson to go to Portsmouth yesterday afternoon for a fee which could rise to £3m, but resisted the temptation to use some of that money to bring in Doherty.

Darel Russell, who had been linked with Premier League Burnley, also remains at Carrow Road - and made his first start under Lambert in last night's Johnstone's Paint Trophy first round game against Brentford.

However, there is still scope for Lambert to make changes, with a week's cooling off period before the loan window opens.

Lambert - who allowed young striker Kris Renton to join Brechin on loan on Monday - admitted on Monday that he might have to let players go before he could bring new ones in, but the only one leaving City yesterday was, as expected, veteran defender Dejan Stefanovic, whose contracted has been terminated by mutual consent.

The other deal saw on-loan goalkeeper Fraser Forster extend his initial one-month deal to January 2.

Stefanovic hasn't played since last November after rupturing cruciate knee ligaments in his 12 and final appearance, against Preston at Carrow Road.

The 34-year-old returned to fitness, but didn't play under either Bryan Gunn or Lambert and three weeks ago it was announced that negotiations were underway to settle his contract, which had another year to run.

“Dejan made it clear he wanted to leave the club before I joined,” said Lambert. “We thank him for his efforts and wish him well for his future.”

It means Forster remains Lambert's only signing, having originally joined on an emergency loan on Friday to cover for Ben Alnwick, who suffered a facial injury against Sunderland last Monday.

Forster, 21, made his debut in Saturday's 2-0 at Hartlepool.

“He did well coming in on Saturday at very short notice and showed he is a very capable goalkeeper,” said Lambert. “We needed cover due to Ben Alnwick's injury and we have now extended the loan until January, giving us more options between the sticks.”

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