Norwich City Report Card: The proof there’s no better person for returning star to learn from
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
He started the season watching from the sidelines, and ended it with renewed faith from his boss and a new contract. MICHAEL BAILEY surveys the continuing Norwich City party for midfielder Alex Tettey
Just a few days ago marked three years since Norwich City took on the biggest of occasions at Wembley, and smashed it out of sight – and here is the sole survivor set to stand any chance of game time under Daniel Farke come next season.
There are a few contradictions around Alex Tettey from the last campaign. Firstly, he should have left by now.
A signing from the Premier League era and an international footballer for Norway until recently, the chances of Tettey signing a new deal to stay on at Norwich seemed remote at the turn of the year.
That the 32-year-old did put pen to paper on a new two-year-deal – along with a significant pay cut – to stay at Norwich, may show the grass didn't look much greener outside Norfolk. It may well have also carried half of the security he was being offered here.
It may have been the case that what felt initially like a serious, gruesome injury sustained in the 1-1 draw at Barnsley as blood poured out of Tettey's foot, helped convince the Norwegian that the offer on the table from City was worth taking – over the risk of seeing what else could be plucked from the summer sun.
And yet, Tettey clearly wasn't at the forefront of Farke's thinking when he set about his first Championship campaign.
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It wasn't until the sight of City being smashed at Millwall that Tettey was given a league start. From there, Tettey and Tom Trybull formed a formidable midfield partnership that even now should remain City's first-choice option as soon as both players are fully fit – perhaps that is the really tricky part.
Following his new contract, both Farke and Tettey declared the midfielder would definitely not play every game next season. Managing the body will become evermore important to Tettey as he enters the twighlight of his distinguished career.
That should be where Ben Godfrey steps in.
The returning young midfielder is perfectly placed to learn off his experienced mentor. He has similar attributes and a season at Shrewsbury proved they work.
Should Godfrey show the right attitude come pre-season – and having met the guy, anything else seems wholly unlikely – Godfrey and Tettey should deliver a shared dose of midfield steel that City lacked at times last season.
What we do know is Godfrey could not have a better team-mate to learn from, nor City a better senior figure to knit it all another.
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