Malky Mackay rules out Norwich job and commits to Cardiff City

Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay has committed his future to the Bluebirds and ruled himself out of the Norwich City managerial vacancy.

The 40-year-old Scotsman was once the favourite to replace Paul Lambert in the Carrow Road hotseat after he was appointed Aston Villa boss on Saturday.

But Mackay released a statement stating he had a job to finish at Cardiff.

"I have started a project at Cardiff City," he said. "I am fully committed to our club and the challenges ahead."

Mackay's pledge to the Championship side came just hours after Norwich chief executive David McNally had revealed his Premier League club wanted a manager with "top-league" experience.

Mackay, who played 212 times for Norwich City between 1998 and 2004, guided Cardiff to the Championship play-offs in his first season at the Welsh club following his arrival from Watford.

MALKY MACKAY FACT FILE

  • Name: Malcolm George Mackay
  • Born: 19 February 1972 in Bellshill
  • Playing career: Queen's Park, Celtic, Norwich City, West Ham United, Watford
  • International caps: Scotland 5
  • Managerial career: Watford (2009-2011), Cardiff City (2011-)
  • Did you know?: Mackay made his Scotland debut aged 32, the oldest Scottish debutant for 37 years

He signed a new three-and-a-half year contract in February after Mackay inspired Cardiff to the Carling Cup final where they narrowly lost on penalties to Liverpool .

Cardiff insist that they have had no approach from Norwich to speak to Mackay as he was favourite among bookmakers to replace fellow Scot Lambert.

But Mackay said on Monday: "I am very flattered to be linked with the vacancy at Norwich City.

"They are and always will be a club close to my heart.

"I have a lot of good friends within the club and great respect for Delia Smith and Michael Wynn-Jones. David McNally, the club's chief executive, has handled this situation well and is guiding Norwich in the right direction.

"However, I have started a project at Cardiff City and, alongside chief executive Alan Whiteley, we have put structures in place to ensure long-term stability and success."

And Whiteley was "delighted" Mackay had "put out his own statement" out to end the speculation linking him with Norwich.

"It is always a worrying time," said Whiteley.

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He is one of the bright young managers in the game so it doesn't surprise me that people are looking at him

Cardiff City chief executive Alan Whiteley on Malky Mackay

"It is flattering on one level that a higher club in the Premier League comes in for your manager as it means you are doing something right.

"But he had assured me from the start that his future was at Cardiff, that we had started something and he wanted to see it through.

"He is one of the bright young managers in the game so it doesn't surprise me that people are looking at him.

"And that was one of the principle reasons behind tying him up on a long-term contract so if anybody did come in, at least it would make it as difficult as possible to go."

Mackay's statement was after Norwich chief McNally had told the Eastern Daily Press  : "We are looking for somebody who has got top-league experience.

"I don't think the candidate necessarily has to have Premier League experience - but they have to have top-league experience.

"The search is certainly a European search. If, for example, you have managed in Serie A, La Liga, the Bundesliga, they are some of the toughest leagues in the world too.

"So why on earth if there is a candidate in one of those leagues who was available and we felt was right for us should we say no to them just because they haven't managed in the Premier League?"

Current Birmingham City and former Newcastle United boss Chris Hughton is now favourite to replace Lambert while Celtic boss Neil Lennon has also been linked to the post.