Date of birth
A versatile athlete who can play at centre-back or in midfield, Ben Godfrey’s impressive distribution and passing that’s easy on the eye make him a modern defensive option for Daniel Farke’s side.
Like most of the City squad, his route to Norfolk wasn’t quite routine, getting an exposure to men’s football early and developing his technical game afterwards.
Close to home
2011 - 2016: Godfrey’s youth career begins at his birthplace of York, but he quickly moves to Middlesbrough after joining York’s academy. However, he’s released by Boro in the summer of 2011 and returns to York’s Under-15s after failed trials at Leeds United and Sheffield Wednesday. He stays with York until breaking through to the first team aged 17 for a 1-0 win at home to Yeovil Town in August 2015. He only makes 15 appearances in all competitions for York’s senior squad before Norwich come calling.
The Norwich City years
2016 - Present: 18th birthdays are supposed to be special, and so it proves as Godfrey moves to Premier League-based Norwich on his. He initially plays in the Academy, but in August 2016, Godfrey gets his senior debut in a Carabao Cup game at home to Coventry City, coming on in the 65th minute and scoring from distance in the 87th. He makes six appearances for City in all competitions before securing a loan move to Shrewsbury Town in League One in August 2017 to get early exposure to men’s football.
Godfrey becomes pivotal to their third-place finish in the league and plays 51 games in all competitions, but they lose the playoff final to Rotherham United. They also finish runners-up in the Leasing.com Trophy.
He returns to Norwich in time to play his part in our promotion-winning season, becoming a crucial cog of the defence as he plays 36 games in all competitions in 2018-19. In doing so, Godfrey earns an international callup to England Under-20s in March 2019. He then makes the step up to the Premier League with conviction, playing 33 games in all competitions in 2019-20 and becoming one of the centre-backs City have to rely on. Early that season, Godfrey features for England’s Under-21s, leading the Three Lions out as captain for a 2-0 win at home to Kosovo, an impressive progression from where he was just a few years ago.