Eight years ago Charlie Goode was playing in the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division, the ninth tier of English football, but this week he was the proud recipient of an official Nike match ball to celebrate his Premier League debut.
The 26-year-old's path to the top began in the non-league with AFC Harefield, Hadley, A.F.C. Hayes and Hendon before he reached the EFL with Scunthorpe United in 2015. From there, the former England C international has continued to rise, battling illness and injury along the way, making his Premier League debut against Norwich City in November.
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The defender spent four years at Glanford Park before moving to Northampton Town in the summer of 2019. His one year with The Cobblers was a memorable one with Sky Bet League Two promotion via the Play-Offs achieved. There was also personal recognition with a place in the League Two Team of the Year and the Supporters' Player of the Year award.
He earned another promotion at Wembley in May, at the end of a maiden Brentford season which saw him restricted to just 12 appearances in all competitions, to complete his eight division rise in as many years. And since making his Premier League debut against The Canaries, Charlie has gone from strength to strength, featuring in each of our last five league games, four of them from the start.
Charlie is the seventh home grown debutant of ours this season to receive their matchball alongside David Raya, Rico Henry, Ethan Pinnock, Marcus Forss, Shandon Baptiste, and Mads Bech.
A Debut Ball, housed in a personalised, engraved case, is given to all homegrown debutants who have been developed at an Academy of a club in the English football pyramid for three years or more prior to their 21st birthday.