Nick Pope has revealed Bruno Guimaraes was “extremely welcoming” upon his move to Newcastle United.
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The England goalkeeper arrived over the course of the summer in a deal worth a reported £10m from Burnley, joining Eddie Howe’s revolution around six months after Guimaraes.
While Martin Dubravka had been the No.1 and an important figure in the Rafa Benitez years, Pope was instilled as Howe’s first-choice and has quickly repaid the money spent to sign him.
According to FBREF data, the 30-year-old ranks fifth for post-shot expected goals, with +2.2. That metric judges how likely a ‘keeper is to save a shot based on the quality of the chance for the attacker, with positive numbers indicating an above-average ability to stop would-be goals, so it’s fair to say Pope is fulfilling his end of the bargain.
The former Burnley stopper appears to have struck up a great friendship with Guimaraes. Pope gifted the Brazilian a scrapbook to document his World Cup memories after the birth of his son, while Guimaraes thanked his teammate for the starring role he played in the Carabao Cup penalty shootout win over Crystal Palace after the midfielder had missed his attempt.
What has Pope said about Guimaraes?
Speaking to talkSPORT while out in Qatar, Pope said: “Bruno is just someone who when I came to the club was extremely welcoming to me.
“He’s just great in the dressing room in general.”
What does this say about Newcastle?
While Guimaraes’ impact on the field is obvious, the fact Newcastle’s star player and the poster boy of the club’s new era is a welcoming figure in the dressing room speaks to the excellent work put in by recruitment staff.
Signing talented players is one thing of course but to get the kind of characters who help foster team spirit is equally important. With Guimaraes, Newcastle certainly seem to have done that.