Newcastle United are being repeatedly linked with goalkeepers, even for the January transfer window.
Over the past few days there’s been unrealistic links such as Gerónimo Rulli and Fernando Muslera, as well as the obvious link to Iker Casillas, who is rumoured to be moving to England every time his career hits a rough patch.
Also fitting in with the theme is fresh claims Newcastle are interested in Peruvian goalkeeper Pedro Gallese, having been recommended the player by Nolberto Solano.
There’s a mix of everything in there: Young, old, and in-between.
If Newcastle United are casting their net widely to get Rafael Benitez a new goalkeeper then they could do a lot worse than take a look at Pau Lopez.
The Espanyol owned goalkeeper spent last season on loan with Tottenham, not getting a game but very much being seen a part of the club’s future. Spurs intended to keep the player, who had impressed Mauricio Pochettino and the club’s goalkeeping coaches, but talks with Espanyol went sour and Pau stayed in Spain.
He wasn’t meant to be playing this season, with Espanyol resigned to Pau running out his contract and leaving in June on a free. However, injury to Diego Lopez gave the 22 year old his chance and he snatched it, staying in the team since.
There’s been renewal talks since, and the idea of staying his risen, but the meetings haven’t really got anywhere and the elder Lopez wants his place back.
Pau Lopez’s performances justify him staying in the team, but Diego Lopez signed a contract to be first choice and will be itching to get back. He played in the Copa del Rey match against Tenerife on Thursday evening, and kept a cleansheet, but given the opposition there’s only so much can be taken from the match.
Now Espanyol have some tough choices, and that provides Newcastle with an opportunity. If the Barcelona club feel Pau isn’t going to renew and is merely leading them on so he stays in the team, then they’re probably going to turn to Diego soon, regardless of who is the better goalkeeper right now.
That presents the situation of selling Pau for a token fee in January, or losing him for nothing when the season ends.
Should Benitez want a goalkeeper then Pau is a worthy consideration, and his performances this season have shown that. There’s a reason Tottenham rated the youngster so highly, and Pau already has experience of living in England, something he enjoyed, which would surely help him settle in Newcastle.
There’s also the financial attractiveness of a deal, a free transfer or a deal around €1-2m, maybe even €3m, leaves a whole lot of room for future profit, something to please the Newcastle accountants.
Pau Lopez: One to think about.