By Matt Farr
Newcastle United goalkeeper Freddie Woodman is set to leave the club this summer, according to a reliable journalist.
The Sun reporter Alan Nixon claimed on his personal Twitter account on Sunday morning that the Magpies were set to send the 20-year-old out on loan to a club in Scotland for the 2017-18 season.
Woodman spent the second half of the previous campaign on loan at Scottish Premiership outfit Kilmarnock, where he kept four clean sheets from 15 appearances in all competitions.
The young stopper also impressed during his international duties with the England Under-20 side earlier this summer, playing a starring role as they lifted the World Cup title.
But Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez is prepared to make an emphatic decision on the future of Woodman at the club by sanctioning his temporary return to Scotland.
Woodman’s impressive form of late could have seen him command an important role within the first-team squad at St. James’ Park next season, despite facing fierce competition for the number one jersey.
Benitez already has Tim Krul, Rob Elliot and Karl Darlow at his disposal, but his summer recruitment plan is likely to see at least one more of his goalkeepers to leave the club.
The Spaniard has already offloaded Matz Sels to Belgian outfit Anderlecht on a season-long loan, and Woodman is set to be the next goalkeeping departure.
Football Insider verdict
Woodman deserves a shot at staking his claim for the number one jersey at the Magpies, but their return to the Premier League stage is neither the time nor the place. The crowded goalkeeping ranks at the club may not paint a pretty picture for his long-term future, but he’s a much better prospect than several of their other options. He still needs to be nurtured though, and the chance to gain regular first-team football in Scotland will do him the world of good. His displays for his country over the summer should also make finding a potential suitor a relatively simple task.
In other Newcastle transfer news, Benitez has reportedly turned his attention to this 71-time international after his initial transfer plan fails.