OXFORD City have sold 18-year-old defender Udoka Godwin-Malife to Forest Green Rovers for an undisclosed fee.

The rising star caught the attention of various Football League clubs, but it was the Sky Bet League Two side who won the race for his signature.

Godwin-Malife, who has signed a two-and-a-half year deal, came through the youth set-up at Court Place Farm, breaking into the first team midway through last season.

But some eye-catching displays in this campaign prompted Forest Green to make their move.

“Udoka’s development has been fantastic to observe and he fully deserves the opportunity to further his career into professional football,” said City director Justin Merritt.

“The club are happy with the terms of the deal with an initial fee, future payments, performance-related incentives and a sell-on clause included.

“Whilst we do not wish to lose our best players, we also have to respect when an opportunity that suits all parties comes around.

“There were a number of clubs in discussions with the club however the player and his representatives were excited at the prospect of joining Forest Green Rovers.”

The player was delighted to make the switch and is eager to test himself at a higher level.

“This club has a really good track record of progressing young players and I wanted to come here, have a good time, kick on and try to get some minutes in League football,” he told Forest Green's website.

“I came in yesterday and spoke to the gaffer. He showed me around the place, introduced me to everyone and introduced me to the playing style. He told me how I’d fit into this amazing club and told me he’s ready to Improve me.

 “I went to Oxford City when I was 16 as a scholar and it wasn’t until last season that I made my debut against St. Albans when the manager showed faith in me and involved me in the first team and since then I have just kicked on.”

“I was flattered when Forest Green were interested in me and it was just like, ‘when can I start,’ so I’m really happy to be here.

“I’m physical, I like playing football, I’m quick and I want to get a better understanding of the game and help contribute to Forest Green.”

Godwin-Malife has made 43 starts for City with four substitute appearances.