Goalkeeper Joe Lewis,
from Broome, progressed through Norwich's schoolboy setup and
was over 6ft 4inches tall at the age of 15 ! He
was called up into the England Goalkeeping Development Programme
at Lilleshall in the autumn of 2001. He won his first international
cap in the Under-16 clash with Northern Ireland at Ballymena on
October 18th 2002, keeping a clean sheet in a 2-0 win for England.
He was then called up over Easter 2003 for the Tournai de Montaigu
to be played in Nantes. A further international call-up, this
time for the England Under-17s, came in June 2003 for a tournament
in which England faced Portugal, the USA and Brazil.
On 6th August 2003, he signed an agreement to join Norwich's
academy as a scholar in July 2004 after he leaves school. On 13th
September 2003, he was called up for cover for Norwich's first
team clash with Burnley as it was feared that Norwich keeper Robert
Green might not have been fit. Awarded squad number 28, he is
the youngest player (at 15) to ever be given a Norwich City squad
number. Injury to Paul Crichton saw
Joe sit on the bench for the Canaries' Division One clashes with
Crystal Palace, Reading and Wigan. Nigel
Worthington admitted that he saw Joe as City's third-choice
keeper ahead of his older Academy teammates Shane
Herbert and Aaron Osborne. On 12th
November, Joe played for England Under-17s in their 1-1 draw with
Switzerland, Joe being beaten by a peanlty.
As expected, Joe was called up to the England Squad for the UEFA
Under-17 Championship qualifying group to be played in South Yorkshire
from 24th - 28th March 2004. In the tournament England will face
Armenia, Iceland and Norway in games to be played in Sheffield
Joe joined Norwich's Academy as a full-time scholar in July 2004.
Academy Director Ricky Martin said "Joe's
been in the Academy set-up from the under-nines and has already
reached international level . Plus he's also trained with the
first team on a regular basis and even sat on the bench for seven
first team games last season when Paul Crichton was injured, so
hopefully the confidence and experience he's gained from that
will stand him in good stead. He's not a new face to either the
building or the first-team staff, so Joe should settle in very
Towards the end of October 2004, Joe signed his first professional
contract with the Canaries.
In October 2005, Joe was seleced for the England Under-19s and
played in their 2-1 defeat to the Czech Republic, whose deflected
goals he was powerless to prevent. He was also called up in February
2006 after Sunderland's Ben Alnwick had to pull out with a leg
injury sustained in a reserve game. Joe went on to have a good
45 minute run out at Northampton in a 3-0 win against Slovakia
Under-19's and drew praise from England coach Martin
In June 2006, Nigel Worthington indicted that he would be willing
to loan Lewis out during the 2005/6 season so that he could get
match experience. Peter Grant was happy
to follow this and Joe was due to join Shrewsbury on loan at the
end of October 2006 only for Grant to cancel it. "I think
they had an injury problem but I wasn't going to allow him to
go because I read the script and I thought it was maybe just for
one game until their keeper came back. If Joe goes anywhere he
is going to go to be playing because I need to see him play.
Joe was finally loaned out on 22nd March 2007, this time to Stockport
County until the end of the 2006/7 season. He made his debut on
10th March 2007, keeping a clean sheet as County defeated Chester
On 23rd July 2007, Paul Gallacher
and Lewis were linked with a loan move to Brighton following Paul
Crichton's appointment as a coach with the Seagulls. On 8th
august 2007, Joe joined Football League newboys Morecambe on loan
until the end of December 2007. In his first game, the season
opneer against Barnet, Joe kept a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw. His
next game was the historic Carling Cup victory over Preston which
Morecambe won 2-1 on 14th August 2007. His form saw him put on
stand-by for the England Under-21 clash on 21st August 2007 against
Returning to Norwich at the end of December 2007 having made
22 appearances for Morecambe, Joe was then the subject of a £400,000
bid from ambitious, big-spending League Two side Peterborough.
If accepted, it would make him their club record signing. Peterborough
manager Darren Ferguson has defended the size of the fee, viewing
it as an investment:
"To get the calibre of player I'm after you sometimes
need to spend big money, It's a big fee, but I believe it's a
fair one because we would be getting one of the best young goalkeepers
in the country. That would make it an investment for the future,
but it also sends a message out to our fans and to other clubs
how serious we all are in taking this club forward.
I just hope that Joe will sign. He didn't know anything about
the move until late on Wednesday night so it's been a bit of a
whirlwind for him. He has asked for the weekend to talk things
over with his family which is fair enough.
Joe has a huge presence and I like that in a goalkeeper. If
we have a slight Achilles heel in our side it's the lack of height
at the back and Joe's presence would ensure that.
He's also agile, has good hands and he kicks well. He has
the whole package and he would be a quality capture."
The transfer to London Road was competed on 8th January 2008
for a fee of £400,000 plus sell-on clause. There was considerable
debate on the Norwich City message boards as to whether this was
a good deal or not. Lewis made his Peterborough debut on 12th
January 2008 in a 1-0 defeat to Macclesfield.
Joe was called up to the England Under-21 squad for the European
Championship qualifier against Republic of Ireland on 5th February
2008. Joe made his debut for the England Under-21 squad on 15th
May 2008 in a friendly agains Wales. He replaced Joe Hart at half
time and carried through a clean sheet, in a game which saw England
On 25th May, new England manager Fabio Capello surprisingly called
Lewis up to the full England Squad ahead of the friendlies against
the United States and Trinidad & Tobago due to fitness concerns
over Chris Kirkland and David James. Lewis said I am
over the moon and thrilled with the call-up - it came out of the
blue and I am enjoying every minute of it. I trained with the
squad on Saturday morning and it was superb to be involved with
the best players in the country. There's a second training session
at 5pm on Saturday and it is a fantastic experience for me. I
managed to make a couple of good saves, which was a great feeling,
especially from Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard. It is a great
end to a fantastic season. Lewis is joined in the squad
by another goalkeepr to have emerged from Norwich's academy -
Lewis was instrumental in Peterborough's promotion from League
One to the Championship in 2008/9 This earned City another £100,000
in transfer clauses. Lewis has been linked with a move to Portsmouth
Joe and Peterborough were relegated at the end of the 2009/10
season after a traumatic season that saw the Posh use three different
In January 2011, Lewis handed in a transfer request. He said
that he wanted to play higher level football: "Im
not desperate to leave Peterborough that wasnt my
reason for handing in a request. My reason is to better myself
at the highest level I feel I can play. Im massively grateful
for everything Peterborough have done for me. I spoke to the chairman
and Barry and they were good enough to accept my request. I gave
my reasons. I feel I have given three good years of service at
the club and I just want the club to know that while I appreciate
everything they have done if the opportunity arises to better
myself and my career then they would allow me to do that. I sat
down with them and they completely understood. They were fantastic
about it and I appreciated their co-operation. Aston
Villa reportedly made a bid but for less than the money Peterborough
had paid for Lewis. Two other Premier League sides then made bids
Lewis was injured when Peterborough beat Lee
Huddersfield 3-0 in the League One Play-off Final
on 29th May 2011 to secure promotion back to the Championship
Lewis left Peterborough at the end of the 2011/12 season when
his contract expired. He had made 167 league appearances for Peterborough.
On 18th May 2012, he was strongly linked with a move to Cardiff.
although Ipswich were also linked with him. He signed a three
year contract with Cardiff on 25th May 2012.
On 5th August 2014, Lewis joined Blackpool on a season-long loan.
The deal for the 26-year-old, who made three first-team appearances
for the Bluebirds last season, could become permanent in due course.
He made his Seasiders debut on 9th August in the 2-0 defeat at
Nottingham Forest. Unfortunately Blackpool were relegaed to League
One on 6th April 2015.
Lewis joined Fulham on 24th August 2015 on a season long loan
from Cardiff. Lewis will provide cover for Marcus Bettinelli,
who damaged knee ligaments in Fulham's 2-1 defeat at Hull. Lewis
said "There's real potential here. Fulham were recently
in the Premier League and you just feel that the club is ready
to be back there. I'm delighted. It all happened quite quickly.
Obviously Marcus got injured and the club saw that it was a bad
one and acted to get some cover." Joe made nine appearances for the Cottagers.
He was released by Cardiff on 23rd May 2016 - he had played just five games for Cardiff. He joined Scottish side Aberdeen on 16th June 2016, signing a two year contract. The Dons also signed fellow goalkeeper Neil Alexander on the same day from Hearts.