Wolves on-loan striker Vokes can push Norwich City to top level
PUBLISHED: 11:06 29 March 2011
Focus Images 2009
The man who gave Sam Vokes his Football League debut is fervently hoping the on-loan striker will play a part in bringing top flight football to Norwich City.
Kevin Bond had just taken over as manager of Bournemouth when he thrust the 17-year-old Vokes into the first team for his League One baptism against Nottingham Forest, back in December 2006.
The youngster made such a quick impression that he was given a three and a half year year contract by the Cherries, but after he scored 16 goals in 54 league games, the club’s financial problems meant he was sold to Wolves.
Now Vokes, 21, has joined the Canaries on loan from Molineux for the rest of the Championship season, and former Norwich captain Bond – now assistant manager at Tottenham – believes the Wales international can prove to be another valuable attacking option for Carrow Road boss Paul Lambert in the final weeks of the promotion race.
“It’s a great opportunity for Sam to go to a club in Norwich’s position and I hope he does well,” said Bond.
“I’d love to see them go up into the Premier League and then to come up against them next season, because that’s where they deserve to be.”
The Southampton-born Vokes scored 12 times in his first full season with Bournemouth in 2007-08, but a 10-point deduction meant Bond’s team were relegated to League Two.
“He was a really good young prospect at Bournemouth but we had him taken away from us,” said Bond, who learned of the player’s sale only half an hour before it was announced.
“The club was in administration and needed every penny and we ended up selling him for, I think, £350,000 to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
“It was done by the administrators and was out of our control.
“He was a good, strong target man and did really well and we would have liked to have held on to him, but obviously we couldn’t.”
Vokes scored eight goals in his first season at Wolves as they won the Championship title, but his first team chances have been limited since then and he has had loan spells with Leeds, Bristol City – where he tore a hamstring on his debut – and Sheffield United.
“I have seen him playing for Wolves but there was a lot of competition for places and he had to play up a couple of levels from where he had been before. I suppose he really needs to get regular football,” said Bond.
Vokes joined the Canaries last week and Bond said: “Sam’s a strong lad, powerful in the air and not short of pace for somebody his size. He’s a good lad and will work hard.
“The manager might look at him as an alternative to what he has, if he hasn’t got that type of striker available, and he might just be able to add something.”
Bond, who played 161 games for the Canaries between 1976 and 1981, has an exciting end to the season of his own in store at White Hart Lane, as Tottenham pursue European and domestic success.
“We are into a quiet couple of weeks with a Saturday off but then we have couple of big Champions League games (against Real Madrid) and, even more importantly some big Premier League games, with us trying to get into that top four spot again,” Bond added.