Newcastle delay January transfer with quest to end 68-year trophy wait potentially hinging on Eddie Howe decision

Newcastle manager Eddie Howe

Newcastle will wait until late in the transfer window before making a decision on an exit-linked player who could have a major say on whether they’re successful in the League Cup, TEAMtalk understands.

The Magpies’ last major trophy was lifted back in 1955 when defeating Man City 3-1 in the final of the FA Cup. Newcastle did win the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1969 and the Intertoto Cup in 2006, though they are not considered major trophies most people’s eyes.

Eddie Howe has guided his side within site of Wembley this season after Newcastle advanced to the semi-finals of the League Cup.

Their reward is a two-legged tie against Nathan Jones’ resurgent Southampton. The first leg will be played on January 24, and the return match on January 31.

Now, TEAMtalk has learned Newcastle’s cup run has had a major effect on the future of back-up goalkeeper, Karl Darlow.

Darlow has been linked with a potential move away from Newcastle during this month’s transfer window with a number of clubs monitoring his situation.

The 32-year-old has been pushed down the pecking order to third choice at St James’ Park following the surprise early return of Martin Dubravka from his loan at Manchester United.

Dubravka – who cut short his season-long loan deal at Manchester United earlier this month – is set to act as No.1 keeper Nick Pope’s back-up in the second half of the season.

Newcastle now have four goalkeepers on their books in Pope, Dubravka, Darlow and Loris Karius all fighting it out for two first-team spots.

Darlow importance heightens with Dubravka ineligible

Dubravka was given the nod over Darlow to be named on the bench for their last two Premier League games against Arsenal and Fulham.

However, Dubravka is cup-tied for the Carabao Cup semi-final with Southampton next week having already played for Man Utd in the earlier rounds.

As such, we understand manager Howe wants Darlow around to be on the bench for the first leg of the semi-final at St Mary’s. In the event Pope gets injured either before or during the match, Darlow would be the starter.

The alternative is relying on former Liverpool stopper Karius who has never been the same since his infamous error-strewn display in the 2018 Champions League final.

Darlow’s future is therefore being put on ice until at least the first leg next Tuesday.

Given the second leg takes place on deadline day, Darlow may wind up seeing a potential exit blocked once again if Newcastle don’t take a commanding lead into the second leg.

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