Imps Battle Portsmouth For England U21 Keeper

Credit Graham Burrell

The Imps are locked in a battle with Danny Cowley’s Portsmouth for the services of England Under 21 keeper Josh Griffiths, according to the Daily Hate Mail.

City are without a first-choice keeper after Alex Palmer returned to the Hawthorns and are surely in pole position for Griffiths, who is just 19-years-old. However, much like Palmer, he proved himself an exciting prospect with a loan deal in League Two last season and is ready to step up for another stint in senior football.

The Hereford-born keeper emerged from the Baggies youth academy after joining at the age of 10, and spent last season on loan at Cheltenham, where he lifted the League Two title, keeping 23 clean sheets in 50 appearances. That form earned him the Young Player of the Year award at Whaddon Road and led to an even bigger honour shortly after. He was called up to the England under-21 squad for their Euros group stage campaign in March, although he didn’t appear.

Josh Griffiths :: Joshua James Griffiths :: Cheltenham Town

City are not alone in their pursuit of the youngster: Danny Cowley is reportedly keen to take him to Fratton Park after letting his first choice, Craig MacGillivray, leave on a free transfer at the end of the season. It makes for an interesting first duel with our former manager, the first of many both on and off the pitch over what is sure to be an exciting season.

Sheffield Wednesday are also thought to be interested in a move for Griffiths, whilst Cheltenham chairman Andy Wilcox claims that the youngster wants to return to the south east after enjoying his spell there. As for the Imps’ links to Griffiths, there’s no doubt he is a solid prospect and his experience in League Two has stood him in good stead. He is still young, not much older than Sam Long, but as a youthful imps side proved last season, age is not a barrier when it comes to a promotion push. City certainly need to add a keeper to the ranks, and Griffiths fits the bill if we can hold off interest from other clubs.