On 8th January 2010,
Norwich City signed USA Under-23 international Zak Whitbread from
Millwall on an undisclosed fee. Zak is a left-sided centre-half
who has missed the first half of the 2009/10 season after being
sidelined this season by a hip injury.
Although born in the USA, Whitbread grew up primarily in the
north of England in Merseyside although 5 years were spent in
Singapore when his father Barry was the coach of the national
He began his career with Liverpool, joining their centre of excellence
at age eight. He worked his way through the academy before joining
the reserves in 2003. His first match in the Liverpool jersey
took place in 2003 in an exhibition match against Thailand during
the club's Far East Tour. He came on to the pitch after the start
of the second half. Whitbread made his first team debut in the
2004-05 season, and played a number of games alongside Sami Hyypiä
in Liverpool's 2005-06 Champions League qualification campaign.
He made a total of six first team appearances for Liverpool
He joined Millwall on loan in the 2005/6 season before joingin
them permanently in June 2006. He played 92 times in four years
with Millwall, losing the League One play-off final to Scunthorpe
He played for the United States under 20s team in the 2003 World
Youth Championship. He started every match and scored his first
goal for the U.S. to help the squad reach the Quarter Finals.
Paul Lambert said Zak was
somebody I always liked. I never thought I could get him, to be
perfectly honest and then things transpired and I managed to try
to sell the club to him.I think he'll be terrific here once he
gets fully match fit and once he gets right involved, he will
be a big player for us. We just need to get him up to speed and
I hope it's not too long before he's right in the mix"
He made 4 appearances in 2009/10
After a slow start to the 201/11 season due to injury, impressive
form for Norwich in the post-Christmas period saw him called up
to the USA full squad for the first time. Unfortunately injury
ruled him out of the games against Argentina and Paraguay in March
Norwich won promotion to the Premiership, on 2nd May 2011 with
a 1-0 win at Portsmouth with Whitbread playing a key role (23
appearances, 1 goal) for the Canaries. Whitbread finished the
2011/12 season with 21 appearances as Norwich finished 12th in
the Premier League
On 17th May 2012, Whitbread was one of five players whom Norwich
announced would leave the club on 1st June as their contracts
would not be renewed. He joined Leicester on a two year contract
in late July 2012
On 30th September 2013, Whitbread joined Derby on a three month
emergency loan. He had made four appearances for the Foxes during
2013/14 to date. Although a calf injury kept him out of action
for two months, Derby extended his loan at the beginning of January
until the end of the 2013/14 season.
Whitbread was released by Leicester at the end of the 2013/14
season. He had played 21 games for Leicester. He signed a one
year contract with Derby on 25th June 2014. He was released by
Derby at the end of the following season.
In July 2015, he was reported to be training with Sheffield United. He nearly went to America in the summer of 2015 and was training with New England Revolution, but he'd just had a son and so thought it wasn't the right time to make the move.
On 16th October 2015, he signed a short term contract with Shrewsbury until January 2016. He then signed an extension until the end of the 2015/16 season.