Kinnear has made it very clear today that he would like to keep reserve goalkeeper Steve Harper, which is the first time he’s said that.
Steve Harper, Newcastle’s excellent reserve goalkeeper
Joe Kinnear told the Newcastle Evening Chronicle today:
“Harps has a contract that needs to be sorted out.” “Steve would probably be playing somewhere else, and who is there to say he would not be the England goalkeeper?”
“Shay’s the Irish national goalkeeper, and Harps would certainly be in with a shout with the England set-up.”
“I’m obviously aware of that, but I wouldn’t like to lose him, that’s for sure.”
We also believe Steve could have been knocking on the England door if he was a regular Premier League goalkeeper somewhere else, but he’s prepared to stay at his local club, even though it has stopped his career advancement, because of the great Shay Given.
Newcastle’s goalkeeping position is strong with Harper, Given, Krul (20), Fraser Forster (20) and Ole Soderburg (18) top goalkeepers, some of them still in the making.
Speaking on his strong goalkeeping squad, Kinnear added today:
“That’s probably the strongest position we’ve got at the club.” “They (Given and Harper) are both very talented goalkeepers“
“That’s one position I can go to bed at night and not worry about, because we have got two world-class goalkeepers.
“I would love to keep it that way.”
Harper had talked earlier about wanting to stay at the club:
“I’ve really enjoyed the last two years, as I played over 20 games.” “This year’s been very difficult. I haven’t been able to get a game yet, so it’s important to keep ticking over.”
“I had a good pre-season where I played in a lot of the matches.” “I got a game in for the reserves last month at Wigan, and it was important to get one in this month.”
“I was only too happy to play in the reserves.” “Shay’s obviously had a very difficult two years with injuries, but he looks to be over that now.”
“He’s got the shirt, and while he stays fit and keeps doing well, that’s the way it’s going to be.”
But we do think if Steve Harper is signed to a new contract, then ambitious young Dutchman Tim Krul, could be on his way in January.
The Newcastle club could get £2M for the youngster, who almost went to Feyenoord last summer, but that move was blocked at the last minute by Dennis Wise.
We wouldn’t be at all surprised if Krul moves on next month, as we’ve said before, and although he’s an excellent young goalkeeper there’s just no first team future for him at Newcastle for a number of seasons.
We think his ambition will cause Tim to move on to pastures anew.