Norwich City: David Wagner appointed new head coach of Canaries | Football News

Norwich have appointed David Wagner as head coach following the sacking of Dean Smith.

The former Huddersfield boss – who guided the club to the Premier League for the first time in 2017/18 – has signed a 12-month rolling contract at Carrow Road.

German-born former USA international Wagner replaces Dean Smith, who was sacked on December 27 after 13 months in charge.

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Highlights of the Sky Bet Championship match between Norwich City and Watford.

The club made the announcement after a work permit and visa were secured.

Norwich sit 11th in the Sky Bet Championship table after 26 games, having lost four of their last six.

Speaking to canaries.co.ukWagner said: “This is a very special and proud moment for me. To be here, back in England, as the head coach of Norwich City is a huge honour.

“I’ve very pleased with what I have seen so far. The facilities at the Lotus Training Center are top class. We now have to look forward and work extremely hard.

“This is a new challenge for us all. Will it be easy? No. We have to leave what has happened in the past behind. If we want success, we have to be together. Together as a group of players, backroom staff and supporters.”

Sporting director Stuart Webber said: “We’re delighted that David and his staff have agreed to join the club.

“After speaking with David, who is someone I’ve known for a long time, he quickly became the outstanding candidate. His knowledge of our squad, vision, idea around football and working style is something that clearly aligns with our short, medium and long-term goals.

“We know we need to get to work and produce some positive performances. As always, results will follow if the performances are there.”

Norwich’s next five fixtures

Blackburn (H) – Sunday January 8, 2pm (FA Cup)

Preston (A) – Saturday January 14, 3pm

Coventry (A) – Saturday January 21, 12.30pm – Live on Sky Sports

Birmingham (H) – Saturday January 28, 3pm

Burnley (H) – Saturday February 4, 12.30pm – Live on Sky Sports

Webber: We had to sack Smith

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Norwich City Sporting Director Stuart Webber tells Sky Sports why the club had no choice but to part company with Dean Smith.

Norwich sporting director Webber had earlier told Sky Sports News the club had no choice but to sack Smith after their 2-1 loss at 10-man Luton Town on Boxing Day.

“There’s a number of factors but the atmosphere especially in the second half (vs Blackburn) was difficult for the players to perform,” Webber said. “I thought Dean didn’t deserve that but the fact is, that’s what happened.

“We also had to look at performances in the main. Were they at the level we’d hoped that they would be? As always there are mitigating factors for that when you get relegated. It’s difficult sometimes to turn the mentality around, you get used to losing so you’ve got to get used to winning again.That’s easier said than done however strong you think the squad is.

“But ultimately, when we approach the halfway point in the season, we felt that we had to make a change. The performance at Luton and the fan reaction, it was there and certainly played a part. As we came into two important home games with Reading on Friday and Watford, we had to do something to try to change the mood and the direction our season is going in.

“The top two have gone a long way away from us in the last two or three weeks and we’ve got to make sure, if we can, to try and keep somewhere near them. If not, certainly to not drop out of the play-off places.

“We felt that, could we stick [with Smith] longer? Yes. Would we have liked to? Yes, because we believed in Dean and what he was ultimately trying to do, but then when we put all the factors together when I sat with Dean and spoke to him, it became a decision that we probably felt was in the best interests of the football club and probably of Dean as well at that point.”

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