Norwich City have been handed a huge boost in their pursuit of Union Berlin defender Toni Leistner, with the player having turned down the chance to sign a new contract at his current club.

The German was a target for the Canaries in the summer transfer window and reports indicated that the Championship outfit had a bid rejected by Union Berlin.

However, with Leistner’s contract rapidly approaching its expiration at the end of the season, it seems Union Berlin made efforts to persuade him to renew his deal. These efforts have been unsuccessful, though, with the club’s official website confirming that the player will leave in the summer.

Union Berlin’s head of first team football Helmut Schulte explained the situation surrounding Leistner:

Our plans for the upcoming season are in full swing and we would like to continue working with Toni regardless of the season’s result. However, he has decided otherwise and of course we accept this decision.

Regardless, I am absolutely convinced that Toni Leistner until his last game for our team will give everything to achieve the best possible season for Union.

The 27-year-old, who is currently plying his trade in the second tier of German football, could emerge as a target for the Canaries in the summer, with the player available on a free transfer.