According to a recent report from The Daily Mirror, the future of Asmir Begovic appears far from certain heading into the summer. The 31-year-old currently plays his football at Premier League outfit Bournemouth and has done so since leaving Chelsea back in 2017, although his recent demotion from Eddie Howe’s side in favour of Artur Boruc has called the goalkeeper’s future at the Vitality Stadium into question.
And that’s because a recent report from The Daily Mirror suggests that the Bosnia and Herzegovina international has had a bust-up with manager Howe to thus plunge his future into doubt – doubt Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez must seek to exploit in a bid to finally give Magpies number one Martin Dubravka something to think about.
Ultimately, 30-year-old Dubravka made the move to St James’ Park back in January of last year on loan from Sparta Prague, with the Slovakia international going on to make a huge impact in the North East in keeping four clean sheets and shipping just 11 goals in 12 Premier League appearances for the club.
And with plenty of impressive performances amongst those 12 games, not least in their 1-0 success over Manchester United on debut back in February last year, Benitez sealed a permanent deal for the shot-stopper, who has continued to produce the goods this time round as well with seven clean sheets in 25 matches for the North East heavyweights.
Yet the 30-year-old did make something of an error at the weekend in allowing Son Heung-min’s shot to slip under him to thus consign Newcastle to a 1-0 defeat at Tottenham, but on the whole Dubravka has been a revelation at St James’ Park, and has comfortably become the club’s number one goalkeeper.
However, besides the Slovakian ace, the other options at Benitez’s disposal don’t exactly inspire much confidence, what with Karl Darlow and Rob Elliot the other senior goalkeepers on the books at Newcastle, and neither doing enough last term to convince Benitez of their top-flight capabilities – after all, there’s a reason Dubravka was brought in 13 months ago.
And while Freddie Woodman clearly has a bright future ahead of him, at the tender age of 21 and having played very little football at a high level, it would be a stretch to expect him to regularly deputise for Dubravka in the first team were he called upon – ultimately, the Slovakian star is comfortably the number one at St James’ Park, with no one else really close.
And that is why a move for a supremely accomplished goalkeeper in Begovic would go some way to adding greater competition in those Newcastle ranks, thus giving Dubravka more to think about so that errors like on Saturday simply cannot be repeated.
31-year-old Begovic may well have lost his place in Howe’s first team at Bournemouth in recent weeks, but one mustn’t forget how impressive he was for the Cherries last term in their run to 12th place in the Premier League, starting all 38 of their league games, and in that time keeping six clean sheets.
Add in a hugely rewarding spell at Stoke City, for whom the Bosnian kept 50 clean sheets and shipped just 210 goals in 173 appearances, and it’s pretty clear just how good Begovic is at Premier League level – he would be a number one at many sides in the division.
And while he may find it tough dislodging Dubravka from Benitez’s starting eleven, his arrival would certainly give the Slovakian something to think about, as he’ll be aware that mistakes like on Saturday could cost him his place in the team – that doesn’t seem likely at present though given the other options at Benitez’s disposal.
And with Begovic’s future at the Vitality Stadium somewhat uncertain after reported bust-up with Howe (as per The Daily Mirror), the door could be open for Benitez to lure the £70,000-a-week ace (as per Spotrac) to St James’ Park.
Newcastle fans… what do you think? Let us know!