The shadow men: Norwich City's forgotten goalkeepers

Football - Norwich City Feature - Norwich City Training Ground - 13/14 - 29/7/13
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Carlo Nash never made a first team appearance at Norwich City. - Credit: Action Images

They came. They saw. They didn’t really do a lot in a Norwich City shirt... 

The Canaries confirmed Orjan Nyland’s departure on Wednesday following the signing of Angus Gunn from Southampton and the Norwegian joins a long list of keepers who failed to make much impact at Carrow Road. 

MORE: City confirm Nyland exit

Here are 10 keepers who didn’t make a big impression during their time in NR1. 

Carlo Nash  

2013-14 – 0 appearances 

Never made an appearance for City after being signed as third-choice keeper by Chris Hughton after being released by Stoke City in the summer of 2013. 

Was always behind John Ruddy and Mark Bunn and never got near the first team during what was a tough season for City when they were relegated. Fans showed their displeasure by trying to vote Nash as their player of the season despite not making an appearance. 

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Paul Crichton 

2001-2004 – 6 appearances 

DISS TOWN V NORWICH CITY, PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY BEFORE THE START OF THE 2003-4 SEASON.PAUL CRICHTON.

Paul Crichton in action for Norwich City in a friendly against Diss. - Credit: Archant

Signed in the summer of 2001 from Burnley for around £150,000 as back-up to Robert Green, who had just been promoted to first choice after Andy Marshall’s departure for Ipswich. Made debut against Millwall in 2002 and ended up with six appearances, never letting City down when called upon. Left the year City were promoted to Premier League under Nigel Worthington in 2004. Returned to club as goalkeeper coach in February 2009 before leaving a year later. 

Scott Howie 

1993-94 – 2 appearances 

A Norwich City legends side are hosting Inter Milan on May 20th at Carrow Road, in aid of the Commun

Former Norwich City goalkeeper Scott Howie. - Credit: Archant

Signed from Clyde for £300,000, Howie was the understudy to Bryan Gunn during his time at Carrow Road. After making just two appearances and only one from the start, Howie moved on to Motherwell. Returned to Norfolk later in his career to star for King’s Lynn before helping Wroxham make it to the final of the FA Vase in 2010. 

Joe Lewis 

2001-2008 – 0 appearances 

24/07/03. U19 NCFC V WOLVES - JOE LEWIS

Joe Lewis never made a first team appearance at Norwich City but went on to have a successful career elsewhere. - Credit: Archant

Progressed through the Norwich City academy and despite being very highly thought of at the time, never made a first team appearance. Lewis was the youngest ever player to be given a first team squad number as an injury to Paul Crichton saw Lewis named on the bench for Division One clashes against Crystal Palace, Reading and Wigan. Following a loan spell at Morecambe, Peterborough signed the youngster for £400,000 and went on to have a successful career at London Road. Currently at Aberdeen. 

Jon Sheffield 

1985-91 – 1 appearance 

Came through the youth set-up at Norwich City but failed to ever displace Bryan Gunn as first choice. Made his only appearance in a 2-2 draw against Aston Villa in April 1989. Had numerous loan spells at other clubs before but enjoyed permanent stints at Cambridge, Peterborough and Plymouth, where he made over 150 appearances. 

Ralf Fahrmann 

2019-20 – 3 appearances 

Ralf Fahrmann cut short his Norwich City loan earlier this week Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Ima

Ralf Fahrmann cut short his Norwich City loan. - Credit: Focus Images

Brought in as competition to Tim Krul for a substantial loan fee from Schalke but served only to take the Dutchman’s game to another level in the Premier League. Made his debut in a 1-0 defeat to Crawley in the Carabao Cup whilst his one Premier League appearance came in a 2-0 away defeat to Crystal Palace. Loan was terminated in March 2020 as he joined Norwegian side SK Brann but never made an appearance there due to the pandemic. Made 22 appearances for Schalke last season. 

Jake Kean 

2015-16 – 0 appearances 

Signed by Alex Neil as back-up to John Ruddy and Declan Rudd from Blackburn Rovers but failed to ever make an appearance. Sent out on loan to Colchester and Swindon during his time at Carrow Road he eventually left the club to sign for Sheffield Wednesday. Kean is currently the goalkeeper coach at Notts County. 

Lee Camp 

2006 – 3 appearances 

2013 – 3 appearances 

Brought in my Nigel Worthington as cover for Paul Gallacher but when Peter Grant came to the club, he promptly signed Jamie Ashdown. However, Ashdown’s reluctance to extend the loan and injury to Gallacher saw Camp make his debut in a 3-1 win against Leicester. 

Returned to parent club Derby in December 2006 but would come back to City again later in his career under Chris Hughton from Nottingham Forest, making another three appearances. Enjoyed a brief spell at Swindon towards the end of last season. 

Michael Theoklitos 

2009-10 – 1 appearance 

Signed by Bryan Gunn in the summer of 2009 after a trial the previous season. Made just one horrendous appearance during the 7-1 defeat to Colchester United on the opening day of the season. Was never to be seen again in a Norwich shirt – although the ones he did use were apparently being sold in a charity shop in Australia a few years ago. 

Ben Alnwick 

2009 – 6 appearances 

Signed on a three-month loan from Tottenham in July 2009 after Michael Theoklitos’ international clearance hadn’t come through. Made his debut in a 4-0 win against Yeovil in the Carling Cup before injury cut short his City stint. Most recent club was Bolton but left at the end of the 2018/19 season. 

Who else belongs on this list? What other keepers didn’t make the grade at Norwich City? Let us know in the comments.

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