Van Wolfswinkel doesn’t expect Norwich City return

Ricky van Wolfswinkel, who suffered relegation from the Premier League with Norwich City last season, wants to stay at his loan club St Etienne.

The Holland international, who has two caps for his country, joined the Canaries in a club record £8.5million deal from Sporting Lisbon last summer, as then-manager Chris Hughton looked to consolidate their standing in the top-flight. However, the 25-year-old scored just one goal in 25 league outings as City finished 18th and suffered relegation.

Not overly keen on playing in the Championship, van Wolfswinkel was keen to move on ahead of the current season, although it isn’t thought there was an abundance of interest in his signature. He eventually joined St Etienne on loan for the duration of the campaign, and after an encouraging start to life in France, he admits he would be willing to stay.

“These are probably the best fans I’ve had the chance to play in front of,” he told Le Progres. “I’m seriously thinking about staying here. But for it to happen, I will need to play well, be important for the team. But I don’t see why I would want to go elsewhere. The Netherlands, Portugal, England, France – we’ve moved a lot and my family feels good here. People are very friendly.”

Whether he remains with Les Verts, only time will tell. He is under contract at Carrow Road until the end of the 2016-17 season, and the Canaries would likely want to recoup as much as their outlay as possible. One thing which seems certain is that van Wolfswinkel will do all he can to secure a move away from his parent club, having made no secret of his nightmare spell in East Anglia.

“I did not like my last year in England but I do not think it has slowed my career,” he said. “I was hurt by it. I could not show all my qualities or play every week, plus the team did not practice good football. You learn a lot when you succeed. But maybe we learn more when going through a bad period. It happens, and I came out stronger mentally. It’s allowed me to target a lot of things I need to do differently. I talked to Robin van Persie about Norwich, that is true. He said it was always difficult to face Norwich at home and they did have a good crowd and a good ground. Nothing else.”

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