By Arsenal correspondent Tony Hughes
Newcastle are targeting a summer move for Arsenal deputy goalkeeper David Ospina, Football Insider sources understand.
The North-east club are in the market for a new shot-stopper if they retain their Premier League status.
Established No1 Tim Krul is out for the rest of the season with a cruciate ligament injury while his deputy Rob Elliot has had a mixed time between the sticks.
A well-placed source has told Football Insider that Newcastle believe Ospina, who is rated in the £4million bracket, has the pedigree to improve a team that has leaked 49 Premier League goals this season, just one shy of Norwich and Sunderland, who have each shelled 50 goals.
The 27-year-old has made just four appearances for Arsenal this season since the arrival of Petr Cech from Chelsea and has grown frustrated at a lack of first team opportunities.
Arsene Wenger has indicated he will hand the Colombia international a rare start in Saturday’s FA Cup fifth-round match against Hull and remains an admirer of the former Nice goalkeeper.
“It was a very, very difficult decision for me [to sign Cech] because I rate Ospina highly,” said Wenger last month. “Ospina is a keeper who, in my opinion, is underrated, especially in England.
“But [signing Cech] was maybe one of the few opportunities to say, ‘Okay, this is an obvious [transfer].’ It was more to say, ‘If I don’t do this, it would have been a mistake.’”