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Newcastle reportedly closing in on deal to sign Nick Pope

A major update has emerged on Newcastle United and their pursuit of Nick Pope in the summer transfer window…

What’s the talk?

Northern Echo journalist Scott Wilson has revealed that the Magpies are set to make the giant shot-stopper their second signing of the month, after bringing Matt Targett in from Aston Villa.

He Tweeted:NUFC close to completing a deal for Nick Pope. Fee for England international will be around £12m, with Burnley keeper set to battle with Martin Dubravka for number one spot next season…”

In the accompanying article, it is claimed that the England international has told the Clarets that he would like to move on following the club’s relegation from the Premier League.

The Athletic’s David Ornstein has since added: “Newcastle understood to have agreed fee in principle with Burnley for Nick Pope. 30yo England int’l GK now set to undergo medical. Hope is deal will be completed by end of week.”

Forget Hugo Ekitike

Whilst talks are reportedly set to take place with the Stade Reims striker this week, it is time to forget about Ekitike for now and focus on how good of a signing Pope can be for the club.

The Burnley star is set to join to provide competition to Martin Dubravka and his statistics suggest that he can be a big upgrade on the current Toon number one when it comes to sweeping up.

Pope ranks in the 99th and 98th percentiles for defensive actions outside of his box and the average distance of those actions respectively per 90 over the last 365 days. This shows that he is one of the best goalkeepers in Europe’s top five leagues in terms of successfully coming off his line to prevent danger.

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Newcastle United striker Callum Wilson celebrates with Joelinton

How many 2021/22 Premier League goals did Newcastle score?

Dubravka, meanwhile, ranks in the 11th percentile in both categories. He was reluctant to leave his penalty area too often in the 2021/22 campaign and his statistics look poor in comparison to the man who may end up replacing him at St. James’ Park.

When it comes to shot-stopping, there was not a great deal of difference between them as Pope saved 73.6% of the shots against him in comparison to the Slovakian’s save percentage of 67.9%.

These statistics suggest that the Englishman will be a sublime addition to the team as he will put real pressure on Dubravka and offer the head coach a different style of goalkeeper – with his ability to sweep up behind the backline – to utilise in games.

Therefore, Howe will be elated by the Burnley giant’s imminent arrival and will now be looking forward to working with him next season, assuming the deal goes through.

AND in other news, PIF plotting NUFC swoop for “infectious” £50m “class act”, just imagine him & Trippier…