Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka is edging closer to departing St. James’ Park, with a number of clubs interested in signing him.
Aston Villa lead the race to sign the 30-year-old, as he looks to leave Tyneside in a time of unrest. It comes after manager Rafael Benitez left the Magpies following the end of his contract, with the manager's position still vacant – although Steve Bruce should be appointed at the start of next week.
As reported by the Daily Mail, Aston Villa are interested in signing Dubravka to further strengthen their squad ahead of their top flight return. The Villans are back in the Premier League for the first time in three years, after winning the Championship play-off final in May.
However, Villa will face stern competition in the race to sign Dubravka. Tottenham are hoping to bring the Slovakian in as a backup goalkeeper, while Manchester United will target him if first choice keeper David de Gea doesn’t sign a new contract.
He has also generated interest across Europe thanks to his performances last season, with Porto and Monaco expressing their interest in signing him. However Dubravka is hoping to remain in the Premier League, having arrived in England last year.
Dubravka initially joined Newcastle on loan in 2018, moving to Tyneside seven months after joining Czech side Sparta Prague. He kept clean sheets in a third of his appearances, signing permanently the following summer.
He had another impressive campaign in 2018/19, playing every single minute of Newcastle’s league season. The Slovakian kept 11 clean sheets for the Magpies, as they secured a 13th place finish and another season of Premier League football.
Despite being a fan favourite and a first team regular at Newcastle, Dubravka may be ready to move on after a year and a-half. His contract at St. James’ Park runs until 2022, but he may feel that it is time to move on in order to keep his career alive.
The 30-year-old was named in Newcastle’s 27-man squad for their pre-season tour of China, where they face Wolves on 17 July. The Magpies face further friendlies against Hibernian and Saint-Etienne, before kicking off their season against Arsenal on 11 August.