Norwich City allow young midfielder Ben Godfrey to join League One side Shrewsbury Town on loan
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
League One side Shrewsbury Town have brought in a third young prospect from Norwich City on loan after completing the signing of midfielder Ben Godfrey.
As reported yesterday, the 19-year-old joins Canaries colleagues Carlton Morris and Ebou Adams, who are already with the Shropshire club – Morris for the season and Godfrey joining Adams in staying until January.
Godfrey was signed from York City in January 2016 in a deal which could eventually be worth in the region of £1million and has so far made six senior appearances – signing terms on a new contract earlier this month which runs until the summer of 2021.
“I’m really pleased to be here”, Godfrey said after the deal was confirmed.
“It’s a good opportunity for me. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the lads and the club, so I can’t wait to get started.
“I know that the manager is a great guy and he is going to help me develop, so once I knew they were interested in a loan for me it was an easy decision.
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“A lot of players can disappear in the under-23s system, so for me to come out here, prove myself and try and make a name for myself, it’s a good opportunity.”
Shrews boss Paul Hurst was thrilled to complete the signing.
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“He’s another player that we’ve monitored for a long time,” Hurst added, speaking to Shrewsbury’s official website.
“I tried signing him at my previous club (Grimsby Town), I tried signing him whilst I was here and he’s never been quite available because he’s been in and around their first team.
“He played a bit last season, but the enquiries started as soon as last season finished. I’ve stayed in touch with (loans manager) Neil Adams at Norwich and once I got the call to say he was available I wanted to act on it.
“It was difficult because we have brought a lot of players in and it maybe took a bit of persuasion, but also a lot of backing from the chairman who understood how much I rate Ben.”
Signed as a central midfielder, the strapping teen has also featured in defence for City, scoring a thunderbolt on his debut when playing as a right-back in an EFL Cup first round win over Coventry.
He made 22 appearances for the U23s last season and was also prominent for the first team in pre-season, with only Christoph Zimmermann playing more minutes.
However, a loan spell with the Shrews now beckons, with Hurst’s side having won all three of their games in League One so far this season.
“He’s a great addition to the squad”, Shrewsbury boss Hurst continued. “I’ve brought him in primarily as a midfield player, but he can play right-back and centre-back, so he offers defensive cover.
“He’s a young hungry player who wants to come out and play and get out of any sort of comfort zone that some players can fall into, so I think he’s got the right attitude for it and I’m looking forward to seeing him play for us.
“He’s very competitive, athletic, he’s a good size and I think he’s a winner. He broke into York City’s team at a very young age, but physically it was never an issue to him.
“He likes a tackle as well, so I think he gives us something different to some of the players and similar to others that we’ve got.”
Norwich striker Morris has started all three of the Shrews’ games and scored once with City midfielder Adams making two appearances as a substitute, although he did start a 2-1 EFL Cup defeat at Nottingham Forest, making his professional debut.
They are now joined by Godfrey, with clubs allowed to sign a maximum of four players on loan from one club. Shrewsbury do, however, already have five players on loan and teams are restricted to five players being named in their matchday squad – which would mean one loanee would have to miss out.
Godfrey has featured as an unused substitute on three occasions for Norwich so far this season but head coach Daniel Farke has decided to let the youngster out on loan to gain senior experience.
The youngster added: “I’ve heard nothing but good things about the manager here. He likes to play good football, the lads back his ideas, which is really important and he’s a pleasure to work with apparently, so I can’t wait.
“He wants me to enjoy it and work hard first and foremost. He’s going to help me develop and I can’t wait.
“Norwich know that the manager here is going to help me develop, so they want me to come here and but my ideas into real games and see where that takes me.”