Date: 22nd August 2019 at 6:00pm
Written by:

OPINION

Martin Dubravka became an instant cult hero when he joined Newcastle United in January 2018 and started last season well with a string of solid performances under Rafa Benitez.

However the 30-year-old’s form in the second half of last season started to dip as he made errors that led to goals against the likes of Wolves and Tottenham.

It’s not like the Slovakia international has been one to impress in the opening two matches of the new campaign either as he has only made six saves in the defeats to Arsenal and Norwich while conceding four goals [WhoScored].

Overall, Dubravka has been a good goalkeeper for the Magpies but there is a feeling that he is not looking as solid in between the sticks as he was in his first 12 months at St James’ Park.

So why has Dubravka’s form dropped?

According to the Daily Mail, talks over a new contract with the goalkeeper stalled in the summer and there has also been widespread interest in him.

It is understood that Aston Villa, Tottenham, Manchester United and Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain have all been keen on the former Slovan Liberec shot-stopper.

Has the speculation gone to Dubravka’s head? Or is it the fact that he is reportedly earning just £38,000-a-week on his current contract when team-mates like Yoshinori Muto, Federico Fernandez and Ki Sung-yueng are earning more [Spotrac] despite not being as important in the side?

Either way, it might be time to for Dubravka to forgot about what is going on off the pitch and sort out his form because Freddie Woodman, who is on loan at Swansea, has terrific in his first appearances for the Championship side.

Woodman has averaged 2.8 saves per match [WhoScored], kept one clean sheet, saved a penalty and conceded one goal per match in four outings for Swansea, who currently sit second in the Championship table.

Although it is not clear whether or not Newcastle have the option to recall 22-year-old Woodman in January, most of the time when clubs send players on loan to the Championship, they do have the power to terminate the temporary agreement early if they please.

If that is the case that Dubravka needs to up his game because Woodman young English goalkeeper who has risen through the ranks at St James’ Park and many fans are eager to see him develop into a first-team regular in the future.