According to The Telegraph, Freddie Woodman looks set to start the new 2021/22 season in goal for Newcastle United.
Not only is Mark Dubravka expected to miss ‘several weeks’ with an ankle injury, Luke Edwards has revealed that stand-in stopper Karl Darlow is a major doubt for the big kick off in under three weeks time after COVID-19 saw him admitted to hospital with ‘severe dehydration’ last week.
The 30-year-old is back at home as he looks to make a full recovery, but won’t be able to return to training until the club’s medical team believe he’s shaken off all long-term side effects from the virus.
As a result, The Telegraph report that Freddie Woodman will finally be handed his opportunity to shine at Premier League level when West Ham come to town in just over a fortnight’s time.
The former England U21 star was closing in on a loan move to Bournemouth earlier this month, but an injury to Dubravka and COVID setback for Darlow means he is now in line for his top flight debut.
What happens after that could be the biggest dilemma for Bruce, however.
He’s not in a position to sanction a loan move at present – unless we rely on fourth choice Mark Gillespie for the time being – yet he could well slip back down the pecking order once Dubravka and Darlow are fit again.
Either way, it looks like the 24-year-old will be given a huge chance to impress and stake a claim for that no.1 jersey just two weeks on Sunday!