New Zealand U-20s goalkeeper Henry Gray signs for Ipswich Town

posted in: Central League, News

Goalkeeper Henry Gray — currently in Argentina with the national U-20 squad — has signed a two-year professional deal with English club Ipswich Town.

Gray (18) has completed a successful trial with Ipswich who have won promotion to next season’s English Championship.

He is in line to become the sixth New Zealander to play for Town, following Lee Norfolk (1994-97) and All Whites defender Tommy Smith (2007-18), and loan players Rory Fallon (2010-11), Chris Wood (2015) and Monty Patterson (2016-18).

Gray won the Golden Gloves award when playing for New Zealand at September’s OFC U-19 Championship in Tahiti, which the side won to qualify for the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup due to start on May 20.

Main photo: Henry Gray receives his Golden Gloves award in Tahiti. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek.

Gray has played for Central League club Waterside Karori since leaving Lower Hutt City and the Wellington Phoenix reserves in 2022.

Writing on his Instagram account, Gray said:

“Thank you to Wellington Phoenix for the time I was with you and the the player I am today.

“But a big thank you to Karori for the best group of lads and coaching staff at a club I’ve been at, the best footballing environment and culture I can think of. Now onto this new opportunity that awaits.”

Waterside Karori wished Gray well via their Facebook page, writing:

Henry is a player with a huge amount of talent and potential. As a club we would like to wish him well firstly at the U-20 World Cup and then when he puts on the (blue and white) of the newly-promoted Ipswich Town.

“Once a Wharfie, always a Wharfie!”

As a junior, Gray began his football journey with Upper Hutt City as a 10-year-old, before moving to Western Suburbs for youth football.

More about the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup

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