6 transfer options for Newcastle as Nick Pope suffers devastating injury blow

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Written By Maya Cantina

Eddie Howe is poised to turn to the transfer market after Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope was ruled out for up to five months.

Pope, 31, suffered a devastating injury by dislocating his left shoulder during Saturday’s emphatic 1-0 win at home to Manchester United. The England international, who’s hoping to be part of Gareth Southgate’s squad at next summer’s European Championships, is now expected to be sidelined until April, according to the Telegraph.

While Pope fights to be fit in time for the closing stages of the season, Newcastle boss Howe will in the meantime need to find a new No.1. Although former first-choice goalkeeper Martin Dubravka replaced Pope on Saturday and Liverpool flop Loris Karius is still at St James’ Park, the ex-Burnley star’s proper replacement is more likely to be someone who arrives in the January transfer window.

Mirror Football looks at six options Howe should consider before making his move.

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1. Aaron Ramsdale

This almost makes too much sense not to happen. Ramsdale, having enjoyed two impressive seasons as a pillar of Arsenal’s resurgence, was controversially dropped by Mikel Arteta earlier this season in place of new signing David Raya.

Even his own dad has publicly admitted that the 25-year-old needs minutes in order to ensure that he’s on the plane to Germany next June and Howe could offer him just that – and at a high level. Unlike Arsenal, Newcastle are still in all four competitions, giving the Magpies a solid chance of silverware.

Although Ramsdale isn’t the same profile of goalkeeper as Pope, his ability on the ball would offer Newcastle a different way of breaking teams down. The major concern in this deal – likely a loan – is that Arsenal may not want to strengthen one of their rivals. But would Arteta rather have his goalkeeper debacle done and dusted come January?

Aaron Ramsdale is playing second fiddle at Arsenal
Aaron Ramsdale is playing second fiddle at Arsenal
David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

2. David de Gea

Somehow, the winner of the 2023 Premier League golden glove and one of Manchester United’s greatest ever goalkeepers is still a free agent five months after being released from his £350,000-a-week contract. De Gea’s departure from Old Trafford was unceremonious to say the least, as after reportedly withdrawing their initial offer, Erik ten Hag and co ultimately decided to significantly reduce his salary even further when negotiating a new deal for the second time.

The Spaniard was deeply unhappy with the Red Devils’ behaviour, opting to walk away while United were busy completing the £47million signing of Andre Onana from Inter Milan. Despite lucrative offers from Saudi Arabia and alleged negotiations with Real Betis, De Gea remains a free agent, hoping to secure a move to a Champions League-level club.

Newcastle are exactly that and it’d be a quite sensational move if Howe were to welcome the four-time Red Devils Player of the Year, who infuriated the Magpies on many an occasion. 

David de Gea was released by Manchester United in July
David de Gea was released by Manchester United in July
Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

3. Keylor Navas

Here’s a man who knows all about covering for an English ‘keeper in January. Last season, Navas was drafted in by Nottingham Forest and helped secure their Premier League status during their maiden campaign back in the top flight.

The former Real Madrid shot-stopper, who won three successive Champions League titles as Los Blancos’ first-choice, has returned to Paris Saint-Germain and is currently nursing a back injury. PSG boss Luis Enrique prefers Gianluigi Donnarumma, who on Sunday was sent off to continue his shaky run of form, so Navas would likely be available in January once he’s fully fit.

Get involved! Which goalkeeper do you think Newcastle should sign? Give us your pick in the comments section.

Keylor Navas isn't fancied by PSG boss Luis Enrique
Keylor Navas isn’t fancied by PSG boss Luis Enrique
Franco Arland/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

4. Peter Gulacsi

Staying on the continent, Liverpool fans might well recognise this name. Hungarian goalkeeper Gulacsi was RB Leipzig’s undisputed No.1 for six seasons until he suffered a cruciate ligament injury in October 2022, which kept him out for nearly a year.

With late bloomer Janis Blaswich taking his place, the 33-year-old former Liverpool backup is yet to make a Bundesliga appearance since regaining his fitness, only playing in the early rounds of the DFB Pokal. Gulacsi, who boasts nearly 300 appearances for Leipzig, was recently tipped to join an MLS club in January but surely Newcastle would be too good of an opportunity to turn down.

Peter Gulacsi has lost his place as No.1 at RB Leipzig
Peter Gulacsi has lost his place as No.1 at RB Leipzig
Ralf Ibing – firo sportphoto/Getty Images)

5. Lukasz Fabianski

One of the Premier League’s most consistent goalkeepers over the past decade, Fabianski transformed himself from an unsure Arsenal understudy to a reliable first-choice at both Swansea and West Ham. This summer, though, Hammers boss David Moyes decided to install Alphonse Areola as his No.1 and has only given Fabianski cup games.

The 38-year-old is still a capable ‘keeper, with his calming presence helping West Ham stave off relegation in recent seasons and most notably helping Poland reach the quarter-finals of Euro 2016. Fabianski has voiced his unhappiness with Moyes’ decision and a chance to prove him wrong up at Newcastle could be perfect.

Lukasz Fabianski is now West Ham's cup goalkeeper
Lukasz Fabianski is now West Ham’s cup goalkeeper
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)

6. Hugo Lloris

Last but by no means least, World Cup-winning Hugo Lloris was last seen playing a game of football for Tottenham at St James’ Park in April. The Frenchman didn’t reemerge after half-time, however, as it turns out he’d suffered an injury, which would end his season prematurely and mark his final involvement in a matchday squad.

Since then, new Spurs manager Ange Postecoglou has made it clear that Lloris, now 38, isn’t part of his plans in North London. Retired internationally, the veteran has continued to train with Tottenham as his contract runs until next summer.

Experienced, a leader and unwanted by his current club, Magpies sporting director Dan Ashworth could do worse than to give him a call. Postecoglou has been impressed by Lloris’ reaction, too, saying: “Hugo has been excellent throughout the whole process.

Hugo Lloris last featured in the Premier League against Newcastle in April
Hugo Lloris last featured in the Premier League against Newcastle in April
Serge Haouzi/FEP/Icon Sport via Getty Images)

“There’s no doubt he’s had an outstanding career and contribution to this football club. He’s been the captain for quite a long time and has been very professional, obviously working with Burchy (goalkeeping coach Rob Burch) and the other goalkeepers. He’s been helping the others, Vic (Guglielmo Vicario) being the new goalkeeper, so I have nothing negative to say about him and I wouldn’t. There has been nothing other than him being very, very professional about everything.”

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