A strong and commanding presence in his area, the Blues’ goalkeeper
was a near ever-present for the
title-winning Under-18s in 2013-14. He lifted the trophy alongside
fellow co-captain Gethin Jones following a Man of the Match performance
in the final against Manchester City.In December 2014, Griffiths
was named on the bench for Everton's first-team game against FC
Krasnodar and found himself again on the substitutes bench later that
season as understudy to Joel Robles while Tim Howard was sidelined with
a calf injury. After taking part in pre-season with
Northwich Victoria, Griffiths joined the Northern Premier League side on
a one-month loan deal in August 2015 before spending time with Colwyn
Griffiths then joined joined Halifax Town on a one-month loan deal
and said he snapped up the opportunity when offered to him. The
19-year-old made his debut in the FA Cup defeat to Wycombe Wanderers on
8 November 2015, where he let in four goals.
Ex-Christleton High School pupil Griffiths believes loan moves will
significantly help his career as he continues to progress:
He said: "I bit their hand off; being able to play at a standard such
as the National League can only benefit me. Being here will fill me with
lots of experience which is vital as I am a young goalkeeper. I am
looking forward to the matches and hopefully helping Halifax climb up
the table. I’m looking to improve each day, the opportunity at
Halifax allows me to play men’s football.
"In this league, I’ll learn how to protect myself better as a
goalkeeper, playing for three points every game and in a real league is
the best opportunity I have to improve my game to a higher standard.
I’ve set myself personal targets to play as consistently as I can each
week and perform well and if so that will contribute to Halifax and be
good for the team.
"Playing in this division will make me stronger mentally, physically
and give myself the ability to be pushed. I need this challenge as it
will test me and it’s a challenge I am relishing. Playing in the
National League before Christmas is ahead of my target set by Everton at
the start of the season and I’m going to take things one step at a time
but hopefully by the end of the season I can work my way into the
Football League and achieve my personal target."
However, his loan lasted less than a month after he was sent off
against Gateshead, but would later win his appeal against the red card.
He returned to play for a couple of Premier Academy League games in goal
for the Under-21s
but seemed destined for the bench behind Gray and Hewelt as David Unsworth rotated through the group of aspiring young keepers on
Everton's books. The departure of Jindrich Stanek may have improved his
chances of progressing toward the first team, but that was before
Chris Renshaw was brought in. At the end of
pre-season training, he was farmed out on loan with Cheltenham Town
until 2 January 2017.
Griffiths made 28 appearances for the League Two strugglers, before
he was recalled in January 2017, when Maarten
Stekelenburg suffered a dead leg and Joel Robles got his chance to
displace him. Mateusz Hewelt was on the senior
bench but Griffiths was needed for the Under-23s. He sat on the bench
for David Unsworth for a couple of games before being loaned out to
Motherwell where he played 4 games, conceded 4 goals, and sat on the
bench for the rest of the season, when he was released. He would join
Motherwell in June 2017.
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