Daniel Farke on Premier League interest in Ben Godfrey and Alex Tettey’s Norwich City future
PUBLISHED: 15:20 15 December 2017 | UPDATED: 15:57 15 December 2017
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Daniel Farke has big plans for Ben Godfrey after scotching talk of a Premier League move for the Norwich City prospect.
Godfrey was linked with the likes of Southampton, Swansea City and West Brom earlier this week following his impressive displays on loan at League One title hopefuls Shrewsbury.
Farke confirmed on Friday afternoon at Colney he is yet to make a final decision on whether the 19-year-old defensive midfielder comes back into his squad when he returns to his parent club in January - but Godfrey is a major part of the German’s longer term strategy.
“First of all, it is a good sign because it means he is shining pretty bright out on loan. That is exactly what we want,” said Farke.
“I don’t go too deep with speculation that a Premier League club is watching him.
“When I was a coach of Dortmund’s Under-23s for each and every game there was 60 scouts and nearly each and every Premier League club. Manchester United was at nearly every game.
“Chelsea the same and they didn’t sign a player from me.
“For that, I don’t worry when there is a scout from a Premier League club and they give everything to sign Ben Godfrey. Otherwise it would be very expensive.
“Ben is one of our young starlets out of the academy.
“We had the feeling in this moment it is important to play games. I think he has 20 starting appearances this season.
“That is great for a young player. Sometimes you have to wait and then come into your rhythm to improve. He has done that in the holding midfielder position. That is a key position for the game.
“If some other clubs are thinking he is doing well is a good sign.
“If we were the only club who thought Ben Godfrey was a good player we would have a problem. Other clubs are not stupid. They know he is a good player.
“We have the option (in January) but normally our plan was to let Ben away for a year.
“We had the feeling he needed some games. A guy like Sean Raggett has played many games at this level.
“Ben still only 20 games or so. He needs a complete season but you never know what happens in the next five weeks with injuries.
“The plan is to leave Ben there and he comes back as a really settled player in the summer. Right now, we don’t have to take a final decision on January.”
Godfrey could well be a successor to Alex Tettey at Carrow Road with the Norwegian out of contract next summer.
“Alex doesn’t have to prove anything. He has proved a lot in recent years and also this season how important he can be for the balance,” said Farke.
“He is a brilliant character, an unbelievable professional attitude.
“We don’t have to get too nervous when the contract runs out with older players. He enjoys his life in Norwich and he appreciates playing for this club. We appreciate him.
“To be honest, I don’t think so much about what happens in eight months, it is the next eight weeks.
“All I can say is I like to work with him and hope we can work further on.
“It won’t be a distraction. He knows we really like him. It wouldn’t be fair in this situation when he is not able to prove his worth on the pitch to force some meetings.
“It is a sign of respect so he concentrates on his rehab, gets into the team again and he performs. Then we can discuss things in a relaxed manner.
“We know his value to the club and the squad.”
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