Why Newcastle should hold on to Martin Dubravka amidst PSG links
According to The Athletic, Newcastle United shot-stopper Martin Dubravka is still on the wishlist of continental giants Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-German heading into the January transfer window.
The 30-year-old Slovakian international, who recently signed a new six-year deal (h/t Sky Sports), was the subject of widespread interest from several top clubs in Europe, including PSG and Juventus, during the summer transfer window but he ended up staying put at Tyneside even after the departure of former manager Rafael Benitez to China. (h/t The Athletic)
However, as per the report, PSG are still keeping tabs on Dubravka and Newcastle are likely to have their work cut out in holding on to their prized asset should the cash-rich club from the capital of France come calling for his services during the mid-season trading period.
The 30-year-old’s new deal has placed Newcastle in a strong negotiating position when it comes to warding off interest. However, the prospect of playing in European competitions could still lure Dubravka away from Tyneside.
The Slovakian international has arguably been Newcastle’s most inspired recruit over the past 18 months or so, with Dubravka surpassing all expectations in the Premier League ever since moving to Tyneside on loan from Czech giants Sparta Prague in January 2018.
An overly successful end to the 2017-18 campaign paved the way for a permanent move worth £4.3m to the north-east of England in the summer of 2018 and the 30-year-old has gone from strength to strength, establishing himself as one of the best goalkeepers in the division outside the top-six.
Despite Steve Bruce taking over the reins from Benitez in the summer, Dubravka has unsurprisingly retained his position as the No.1 between the sticks and it is imperative to say that he is one of the first names, if not the very first, on Bruce’s teamsheet.
The 30-year-old has managed a total of 18 clean sheets in 59 appearances across all competitions for the Magpies, shipping a total of 73 goals in the process. Indeed, those numbers are really impressive, considering the fact that Newcastle have found themselves in a relegation dogfight more often than not in recent times.
Looking at things from Dubravka’s perspective, departing Tyneside to join a continental giant like PSG or Dortmund would definitely be the next big step in his career and one that should appeal to him at the ripe age of 30.
The Slovakian, who has previous European experience under his belt for Sparta Prague, MSK Zilina and Slovan Liberec, certainly deserves better pastures than Newcastle and it is really sad to see a player of his calibre wasting his potential at a relegation-threatened outfit.
To that end, though, Newcastle can ill-afford to lose him in January or somewhere down the line in the immediate future, given that they hardly have enough quality in their ranks to replace him.
Karl Darlow is a decent enough back-up but the fans are likely to be aware of his error-prone nature, while Rob Elliott doesn’t really look Premier League quality at this point in his career.
Freddie Woodman, of course, is currently working wonders out on loan at Swansea City in the Championship but the highly-rated England U-21 international lacks top-flight experience and Newcastle need to have an experienced campaigner like Martin Dubravka in their ranks for the next couple of years at least.
To add to that, Newcastle would probably need to shell out a fortune in the transfer window to bring in a quality replacement between the sticks in case of Dubravaka’s departure in January.
And with the Magpies already having plenty of gaping holes in other areas of their squad, it is easy to see why losing the Slovakian midway through the season would be a huge blow to their hopes of avoiding the drop in the Premier League.
- More Newcastle United News
- Why Jean-Philippe Mateta to Newcastle United makes total sense
- Why Kenny Lala would be a smashing signing for Newcastle United
- Why a fee of £10m for Jetro Willems would be a bargain for Newcastle
Newcastle’s attacking deficiencies have been masked to a large extent by the presence of some quality centre-backs and a top-quality goalkeeper in Martin Dubravka in their ranks and the 30-year-old’s departure would definitely leave an unfathomable void for Bruce to fill.
With that in mind, the Magpies should hold on to their prized asset at all costs and losing him could potentially spell danger for a number of reasons.