New Zealand U-20 goalkeeper Henry Gray has made an impressive start to his loan spell with English club Chelmsford City, keeping a third clean sheet in a row.
Gray (18) has yet to concede a goal for City in the National League South having started in the side’s festive season wins against Torquay United (2-0) and a double over local rivals Braintree Town (3-0 and 3-0).
In the latest win, on January 2, 2024 (NZT), Chelmsford played most of the match with 10 men after a red card, and Gray kept his side in the game with an excellent save after a corner.
Watch Henry Gray’s save
Gray’s next match will be his biggest test — an away match on Sunday January 7 (NZT) against third-placed Worthing who have the best attacking record in the 24-club competition, averaging more than two goals a game.
Gray is under contract to English Championship club Ipswich Town but the club have loaned him to injury-hit Chelmsford who play in the sixth-tier National League South.
He made his debut for Chelmsford in the Essex Senior Cup on December 12, and despite saving a penalty in a shootout, the side was knocked out by Redbridge.
Gray joined Ipswich Town from Central League club Waterside Karori.
He became the sixth New Zealander to play for Ipswich 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 the 2022 OFC U-19 Championship in Tahiti, which the side won to qualify for the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup in Argentina.
Main photo: Henry Gray … impressive start to his loan spell at Chelmsford City. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / Phototek.