Nick Pope has completed his £10m move to Newcastle from Burnley with the England goalkeeper signing a four-year contract.
The 30-year-old was keen to stay in the Premier League after Burnley’s relegation to the Championship to ensure he remains in Gareth Southgate’s England plans ahead of the World Cup in Qatar this winter.
Pope, who had one year left on his contract at Burnley, will challenge Martin Dubravka for the No 1 jersey at St James’ Park.
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The former Charlton goalkeeper becomes Eddie Howe’s second summer signing after left-back Matt Targett joined earlier this month.
Pope said: “Now I’m here, I can’t wait to get started. The deal has taken a couple of weeks to come to fruition but it got over the line really quickly, and I’m delighted to be here and I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into it.”
Howe was delighted to have got his man after initially looking to strengthen his goalkeeping department in January.
The Magpies boss said: “Nick is an exceptional Premier League and international level goalkeeper so I’m very pleased to be adding strong competition to a very important position.
“There has been a lot of interest in him from other clubs this summer, so I’d like to thank our owners and everyone behind the scenes for getting us ahead of the competition. I’m delighted he is joining us as we prepare for the exciting challenge ahead.”
Analysis: Why Toon are putting their faith in Pope
Sky Sports football journalist Ben Grounds:
“Newcastle have been shrewd operators in the summer transfer window thus far, with Pope’s arrival set to be the first new face on Tyneside after Matt Targett’s loan move from Aston Villa was made permanent.
“The position of goalkeeper wasn’t the most obvious area in need of an upgrade by the end of last season. Dubravka had been performing admirably in helping the club ease away from any relegation danger, keeping eight clean sheets and conceding just 35 goals in the 26 games he played in total.
“But Pope has demonstrated over several years just what a fine shot-stopper he is, memorably producing saves in away draws against West Ham and Aston Villa as Burnley’s quest for survival fell just short. It contributed to a superior save percentage for Pope compared to Dubravka.
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“The Slovakia international is three years Pope’s senior, but at 33 he is still at a good age with plenty of experience to compete for the No 1 position.
“His superior passing accuracy would be missed if Newcastle are keen to shift towards a more possession-based approach, so Pope will need to show he is more comfortable on the ball, with a range of both short and long passing.
“It is big news for Eddie Howe and for Pope, who has a big few months ahead with the World Cup coming up in November. Playing regularly in the Premier League is a must, and so the move will have come with a degree of guarantee provided he can replicate the same form he showed towards the latter part of the season at Turf Moor.
“He has Jordan Pickford and Aaron Ramsdale in front of him at England but he’ll be looking to dislodge the No 2 position for his country.”
Pope in, Ekitike and Botman next?
Sky Sports News reporter Keith Downie:
“It’s another piece of business for Eddie Howe after the signing of Matt Targett around two weeks ago when his loan from Aston Villa was made permanent.
“That’s around £22m spent already by Newcastle just two weeks into the transfer window.
“As we know, they’re in talks to sign Reims striker Hugo Ekitike and Lille defender Sven Botman. Both the fees in those transfers should Newcastle get them down will eclipse the fees that have been spent on both Targett and Pope. They’re very keen to bring them both to the club.”
On Sky Sports’ Transfer Talk Podcast, Pete Graves gives insight into who could be coming into Newcastle, how much they are prepared to spend and who could leave St James’ Park in their biggest window ever.
“There’s Hugo Ekitike and Sven Botman who are two top-quality players in France, they are the two players who are closest to getting through the door.
“Newcastle have been linked with Lucas Paqueta from Lyon who is great friends with Bruno Guimaraes. The midfielder came over and spent his birthday with Bruno and was even photographed wearing a Newcastle shirt in Bruno’s garden! That got Newcastle fans excited, he’s a starting international for Brazil. Whether they would make a move for him, I’m not sure. I think for Lyon, the price would have to be right. Other top clubs are interested in Paqueta as well.
“They definitely want to add in key positions. Right wing is another player they want to bring in, the likes of Moussa Diaby at Bayer Leverkusen and Ismalia Sarr at Watford. They would love to sign Diaby but they have been quoted a fee in the region of £60m, from what I’ve heard, which at this stage would be a little out of their price range.
“I think they will add a right winger, one, maybe two, strikers, a central midfielder, a central defender and a goalkeeper – so they want to strengthen all the way through the spine.”
Newcastle United will host newly-promoted Nottingham Forest on the opening weekend of the 2022/23 Premier League season.
After a trip to Brighton on the second weekend, Eddie Howe’s Magpies host Premier League champions Manchester City on August 20, before finishing the month with trips to Wolves and Liverpool.
Howe faces former club Bournemouth at home on September 17, while the visit of Brentford on October 8 marks the one-year anniversary of the Newcastle’s Saudi-backed takeover.
Newcastle travel to Leicester on Boxing Day, host Leeds on New Year’s Eve, and then travel to Arsenal on January 2, before concluding their campaign away at Chelsea.
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