Report Benitez Looks At Free Agent Market For Goalkeeper

The Times has reported that Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez is to review the club’s options for a goalkeeper, after Rob Elliott’s terrible knee injury playing for Ireland, which has ruled him out for at least six months.

Rafa has contacts all over the world and he could bring in a more experienced goalkeeper to help out Newcastle in the final games of the season, although Karl Darlow will start against Norwich City on Saturday.

It’s not unusual for Rafa to consider a free agent, but whether he can find a good enough goalkeeper, who’s fit enough to come in and do the job for Newcastle, has to be dubious at the moment.

rob elliot knee slovakia

Rob Elliot – grabs his injured knee on Tuesday night

The season is over six weeks on Sunday when we play Tottenham at home in the final game of the season, so there is not much time left and shows that Rafa is concerned with the lack of experience of Karl Darlow.

The 25 year-old has played only one game in the Premier League for Newcastle in late December and looked full of nerves at the beginning of that game at West Brom, which we lost 1-0.

Rafa is looking to play the experienced players during the Newcastle run-in to the seaosn since youngsters in such a difficult environment are more prone to making errors, due to their inexperience in the game.

Ever since Tim Krul was injured last October the Board did nothing to fortify the goalkeeper situation by maybe signing a free agent goalkeeper or bringing an experienced goalkeeper in on loan in January.

A simple solution last November would have been to bring in Steven Harper, who was available and out of work and could have come in and got the job done for Newcastle should Elliot have been injured.

Instead Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce showed the initiative and signed Harper up.

Murphy’s Law – if something bad can happen it will – is such that Elliot would be injured – which he was on Tuesday night playing for Ireland and is out maybe for the rest of this year with a serious ACL knee injury.

It’s yet another example of the Newcastle Board showing no initiative whatsoever, but to do nothing and hope for the best.

It’s not good enough by a long way.

Comments welcome.

25 comments so far

  • Jib

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:09 AM

    Comment #1

    Victor Valdés is on loan from Man U to Standard Liége

  • martoon

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:16 AM

    Comment #2

    I would have thought even if we do bring a keeper in it would be as back up to Darlow – surely we have to give the lad a chance?

  • Rotonda heights

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:24 AM

    Comment #3

    Poor old Jonas, what a rogues gallery to give evidence against him, epitomised by AP who couldn’t lie straight in bed.

  • lesh

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:25 AM

    Comment #4


    The time for giving inexperienced players a chance went months ago!

  • beermonkey

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:36 AM

    Comment #5


    darlow has over 100 games played in the championship
    he is hardly inexperienced

  • Magpie Season

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #6

    I don’t think we can sign any players as there are also deadlines on free transfers I think. They are about a month after the January window so deadline has passed.

  • lesh

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:42 AM

    Comment #7


    That is very true but we must hope he has the confidence and authority to handle the Prem.

    If nowt else, we still need an experienced keeper for the bench – it’s too early in his career to expect Woodman to step up, if needed

  • Rotonda heights

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:42 AM

    Comment #8

    Although I’m thrilled at getting Benitez and would love to him to stay for years , Sampauli has always been my top choice. So Valencia are very lucky if they get him.

    I don’t think Pako Ayesteran will join Rafa as they went separate ways and I’m not sure it was particularly amicable.

  • cyprus

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #9

    Confidence boost for Darlow. Rafa, you god you , when you do make such moves do them out if the spotlight. If all this is true.

    We are playing our biggest game next. We need them all to play like there’s no tomorrow. Including Darlow.

  • Magpie Season

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:44 AM

    Comment #10

    Here’s my 2 cents on Darlow:

    England GK:
    1st choice – Hart
    2nd – Forster (Butland being out)
    3rd – Heaton

    I was reading an article that mentioned England are only 2 injuries away from having a Championship GK playing in a major tournament for them.

    If Heaton can make the England squad from the Champo I don’t think we should lose hope on Darlow after just 1 game.

  • banjax

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #11

    As I said in yesterday’s blog, I expect Rafa to bring in a loanee G K. with experience, if one fits the bill.

  • Magpie Season

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #12

    Anyone know what’s happening with Alnwick?

  • Jib

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #13

    Prince Albert
    Are Charnley and Carver incompetent or rogues? Make your mind up.

  • Jib

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #14

    1st choice at Port Vale

  • Rotonda heights

    Mar 31, 2016 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #15

    Prince Albert has a ring to it, I quite like it. Seems way more original than Jeff/ Jane/ Jib etc.

  • Jib

    Mar 31, 2016 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #16

    Prince Albert has a ring to it


  • ArtyH

    Mar 31, 2016 at 10:29 AM

    Comment #17

    @Magpie season, its sunny there today 🙂

  • Average_Contents

    Mar 31, 2016 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #18

    Mike dean is the ref on Saturday.

    That’s us fcuked then.


    Mar 31, 2016 at 11:43 AM

    Comment #19

    Dida Is Avaible For Free


    Mar 31, 2016 at 11:44 AM

    Comment #20

    Vladimir Disljenkovic Another Without Contract

  • martoon

    Mar 31, 2016 at 12:07 PM

    Comment #21

    lesh @4 – I’d rather put my trust in an up and coming lad who has been playing and training regularly rather than a ‘has been’ who has been sitting on his backside the last few months!

  • bettyswallocks

    Mar 31, 2016 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #22

    Neville Southall is available although he ‘s s put a bit of beef on. I also think Shilton could still maybe do a job for us even though he’s getting on in years and his eyesight ‘s not what it was.

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 31, 2016 at 12:30 PM

    Comment #23

    An easy face saving solution to the Guttierez situation would be for NUFC to give Jonas a testimonial if he was to drop the court case. It would save a bundle of legal fees and give the fans a chance to show our appreciation for a loyal club stalwart.


  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 31, 2016 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #24

    Superb goal keeping display by Darlow on Saturday and a clean sheet for us.

    I have seen it in my crystal balls.

  • scout

    Mar 31, 2016 at 3:20 PM

    Comment #25

    How fit does a keeper have to be? Not exactly running 8 mile a game.


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