Martin Dubravka has insisted that he is happy to still be a Newcastle United player after being linked with a move away from St. James’ Park in the summer, as quoted by the Chronicle.
Dubravka emerged as a surprise target for French giants Paris Saint-Germain in late July, as Thomas Tuchel’s Parc des Princes natives assessed potential options to replace Kevin Trapp, who has since joined Eintracht Frankfurt (Daily Mail).
Slovakia international Dubravka is an important part of the puzzle in the North East, with the Rafa Benitez signing starting all bar two of the available Premier League games since putting pen to paper on a contract at St. James’ Park (TransferMarkt).
Since making his Magpies debut, the 30-year-old has kept 16 clean sheets from his 64 appearances between the sticks.
His form for Newcastle made him highly sought-after in the summer, where he attracted the watchful eyes of Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United, who were all credited with interest in the 16-cap international, and was considered as one of the options looked at by PSG while they were preparing to lose Trapp on a permanent deal (Daily Mail).
Tuchel’s’ Parisian heavyweights ultimately signed Real Madrid shot-stopper Keylor Navas and sent Alphonse Areola the other way on loan (BBC), but Dubravka is insistent that he is happy to still be at Newcastle.
What has helped to keep Dubravka in a positive state of mind is his continued status as the undisputed number one, having previously enjoyed a good relationship with Benitez.
“It is important to me that my position has not changed. I’m continuing [to play] and I’m happy about it,” he said, via quotes by the Chronicle.
The pair were vital signings after waving goodbye to Ayoze Perez and turned down the chance to purchase their Player of the Year Salomon Rondon following his spell at the club on loan, but retaining Dubravka may prove just as important if he repeats his better form from the past 18 months.
Without Dubravka, Newcastle would likely have had to hit the transfer market to find a suitable alternative, as understudies Karl Darlow and Rob Elliot have not been entrusted to keep Premier League opposition at bay, despite Dubravka making high-level blunders on occasion at the start of the calendar year.
Darlow is deemed as a back-up ‘keeper and Elliot has been tipped for a potential summer exit (Mirror).
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