Newcastle United confirm identity of four replacement goalkeepers who will come in
Shocking bad luck for Newcastle United, who now face a strange situation in their pre-season preparations, with no senior goalkeepers available.
All four who have played first team football for NUFC are now guaranteed to miss the first three pre-season friendlies, probably four of the six in total.
Saturday brought news from the club (see below) that three goalkeepers are now ruled out due to Karl Darlow testing positive for covid and he must self-isolate for 10 days. Whilst having been in close contact with Darlow, Mark Gillespie and Freddie Woodman must also do the same for 10 days.
Then we have the previously widely reported news that Martin Dubravka faces an operation to a foot injury and is set to miss the start of the season. Needing an operation on what is believed to be a broken metatarsal.
During the season, in these circumstances Newcastle would be able to ask for emergency clearance to bring in one or two temporary senior goalkeepers on loan to cover the absence.
However, with it being friendlies, the bad luck presents opportunity for others at St James Park for these three or four friendlies coming up in quick succession.
Newcastle United have now confirmed the identity of the four replacement goalkeepers who will come in.
The Head of NUFC goalkeeping, Simon Smith, saying who will be at York and Harrogate today.
Dan Langley and Max Thompson will be with the first team (today was set to see the first team squad cut in half to play the two games and be supplemented by Under 23s but not wanting to mix the two dressing rooms after Darlow’s covid positive, Harrogate will face Under 23s and York play the first team) at York.
Whilst at Harrogate, Will Brown and Jake Turner will be involved.
Langley is 20 years old and Thompson just 16, whilst Brown is 19 and Turner 22.
Presumably the same four on duty on Friday at Doncaster.
Whilst the Rotherham away friendly on Tuesday 27 July is exactly ten days after the NUFC announcement, so that also has to be in severe doubt in terms of any senior goalkeepers able to take part.
Which then only leaves (see below) Burton away and Norwich at home for senior goalkeepers to be able to get some pitch time for sure, unless anything else changes.
Newcastle United pre-season friendlies:
Sunday 18 July – York City away (2pm)
Sunday 18 July Harrogate Town away(2pm)
Friday 23 July – Doncaster Rovers away (7pm)
Tuesday 27 July – Rotherham United away (7pm)
Friday 30 July – Burton Albion away (7.45pm)
Saturday 7 August – Norwich home (2pm)
Newcastle United Official Statement:
Newcastle United can confirm that goalkeeper Karl Darlow has received a positive Covid-19 test result during routine testing at the club’s pre-season training camp near York.
In line with coronavirus protocols, Darlow is required to self-isolate for ten days. All other players and staff within the first team group have returned further negative test results following additional testing.
Two players – goalkeepers Mark Gillespie and Freddie Woodman – have been identified as close contacts and are also required to self-isolate for ten days despite receiving negative test results.
As a result, Newcastle United will now send a first team squad to York City on Sunday, while an Under-23s squad will travel to Harrogate Town to minimise mixing between the groups.
Everyone at Newcastle United wishes Karl a speedy recovery.
Newcastle United head coach, Steve Bruce, said: “Unfortunately, Karl Darlow has tested positive for Covid-19 and it has affected the goalkeepers, with Mark Gillespie and Freddie Woodman coming into relatively close contact and needing to self-isolate.
“Thankfully, everyone else has been tested again and all those test results were negative.
“Because there has been a positive case, a first team group will travel to York on Sunday and the match at Harrogate will now be made up of under 23s players.
“I have spoken to Simon Weaver, who was very understanding, and I would like to apologise to any Harrogate supporters who have bought tickets thinking first team players were coming.
“Ultimately, we have to follow the advice from medical professionals and take proactive steps to protect players and we simply can’t mix up the dressing rooms, which was our initial plan.”
For the latest coronavirus guidance, please visit gov.uk/covid19.
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