News outlet Sport in Spain are reporting that Newcastle are interested in signing Espanyol goalkeeper Pau Lopez.
The 23-year-old former Spanish U21 goalkeeper is reported to be leaving the Spanish club.
Lopes’ contract runs out at the end of June when he would become a free agent after talks on a new deal have recently broken down.
He was on loan at Spurs for the second half of last season, and it was expected he would sign permanently for Spurs last summer, but he didn’t.
The loan deal had in it an option to buy for €7M, but Spurs didn’t want to pay that amount.
Pau Lopez – 23-year-old Spanish U21 International
Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino was familiar with the goalkeeper from his time managing Espanyol from 2009 through 2012.
Crystal Palace are the other Premier League club who are reported to be after Lopez, so we are fighting it out with the London club for the Spaniard.
An option for Newcastle is to buy him now for a cut-price fee with only 6 months left on his contract.
However, it’s still possible that he could stay at Espanyol because his club are still keen to negotiate a new contract for the 23-year-old.
Another option is to talk to the player now and arrange a deal for him to move in the summer when he would become a free agent.
Newcastle could get him to sign a pre-contract agreement which includes his wages and contract length etc.
Because he came through the Espanyol Youth Academy, there is compensation Newcastle would have to pay Espanyol, which is unlikely to be very much.
Newcastle have also been in discussions to buy Sparta Prague goalkeeper Martin Dubravka, and they have offered the player a loan deal for the rest of season with an option to buy for £4M in the summer.
That offer was turned down by Sparta Prague.
But they have offered two options to Newcastle – one is a loan deal with an obligation to buy the player in the summer, and another is a loan deal where there is an option to buy in the summer.
In the first potential deal, we would have to sign the player in the summer.
It now looks like Newcastle can get either 23-year-old Pau Lopez or 29-year-old Slovakian International Martin Dubravka by Wednesday.
Hopefully, Rafa will get the goalkeeper he has wanted since the summer.
Since he wanted an experienced keeper, we would expect he would go for Martin Dubravka.
We shall see.