Eddie Howe was shrewd bringing in Nick Pope from Burnley after offloading Freddie Woodman to Preston North End, but the 30-year-old’s arrival won’t be welcomed by everyone.

Karl Darlow was briefly Newcastle’s first-choice goalkeeper this season when Martin Dubravka was injured between September and November 2021 and then spent the rest of the season at his deputy under Howe, but the 31-year-old may be considering his options as Pope is sure to take his place.

Dubravka isn’t guaranteed a starting place next season as Pope is a talented and experienced Premier League goalkeeper who’s fighting for a spot in England’s World Cup squad, so Darlow should be fearing the worst.

Eddie Howe might have Dubravka and Pope battling it out for the proverbial No.1 jersey, meaning Darlow and Mark Gillespie would be surplus to requirements.

Darlow joined Newcastle from Nottingham Forest in 2014 and has gone on to make 99 appearances in all competitions, conceding 135 goals with 25 clean sheets. The uncapped Englishman made 25 appearances in 2020/21, but he lost his spot the following campaign after conceding 43 goals with four clean sheets from 25 Premier League games.

Adam Leventhal and Chris Waugh of The Athletic said days ago that Middlesbrough were interested in Darlow, noting that Newcastle’s pursuit of a goalkeeper would mean his eventual departure, so a move looks on the cards. The 31-year-old is open to leaving this summer too, but it remains to be seen where he’ll end up.

In other news, Eddie Howe pulled off masterclass upgrading Freddie Woodman with Nick Pope