Newcastle United could be set to do a deal with West Ham to allow Rafa Benitez to at last land the experienced number one goalkeeper he has been desperately looking for.
After failing to sign Pepe Reina or Willy Caballero, Newcastle were then linked with Joe Hart, but he has joined the Hammers after agreeing a year long loan.
However, West Ham keeper Adrian made clear he wasn’t happy with the arrival and is set to move out, with Rafa Benitez said to be interested in his countryman.
At St James Park, Karl Darlow was priced out of a move to Middlesbrough with the Teessiders instead going for another West Ham keeper, Darren Randolph for £4.5m. An offer of £5m allegedly rejected by Newcastle for Darlow.
Now though, the Chronicle claim that their information is that a swap deal is now on the cards between West Ham and Newcastle.
With Adrian set to move to Tyneside and Karl Darlow heading to East London.
Adrian moved to London from Real Betis back in 2013 and after a settling in period, became number one for two and a half years.
Last season though he sat on the bench more (22 times) than he played, with the now departing Randolph getting the lion’s share of the number one shirt.
Clearly Joe Hart has gone to West Ham with all parties intending him to be number one, so at the age of 30 it is no surprise that Adrian is looking for first team football elsewhere.
With 106 Premier League games in the past four years, he has far more experience than Rob Elliot, who though a year older has only made 35 top tier starts.
The Spanish keeper has also got experience of playing in La Liga. If he did come to Newcastle then as expected after listening to Rafa’s comments about bringing in a new experienced number one, Adrian wold only do so if starting the season as first choice.
As for Karl Darlow, he was left out of the first team squad at Bradford, as was the case in the first friendly at Hearts.
In between those games at Preston, Rafa Benitez brought Darlow on for Rob Elliot at half-time but then bizarrely subbed him after only 25 minutes and brought on Freddie Woodman for the final 20.
As for respective valuations, if there is a deal to be done then I can’t imagine too much difference in their respective price tags. Adrian has performed at a higher level for most of the past five years, though Darlow is four years younger at the age of 26.