Alan Shearer has already given his verdict as Newcastle United agree deal with 'world-class' international

Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images) | Getty Images
Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer and Chelsea star Cole Palmer has already given their verdict on James Trafford.

Newcastle United transfer target James Trafford has been tipped for a big future with one of his teammates believing he is a world-class goalkeeping in the making.

Trafford is expected to become a Newcastle player this summer having already agreed personal terms. The transfer is subject to the Magpies agreeing a fee with Burnley as negotiations between the two clubs continue.

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Having struggled for form and been relegated from the Premier League with the Clarets last season, there has been a mixed response to United’s pursuit from fans. However, it was only 12 months ago that the 21-year-old was being discussed as one of the country’s most exciting young prospects.

Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford is wanted by Newcastle United. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images) | Getty Images

Trafford played a starring role in England under-21s’ European Championship success last summer as he went through the entire tournament without conceding a goal, saving a 98th-minute penalty against Spain in the final.

Cole Palmer, who came through Manchester City’s academy with Trafford, was also part of the team and he adamant that Trafford is going to be world-class.

Palmer said: "Wow. He's so good. You could see it in the academy. Even in training, he's so hard to score past. I'm just glad everyone else is seeing it. He knows himself how good he is but he's not arrogant. He's a nice lad. He's a normal lad who believes in himself.

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"When he first came, everyone was thinking, 'who's this kid?' As time went on, everyone was looking at each other, like 'wow'. He just goes about his business on his own. I always say to him - even when we were little - that he is going to be world class."

Lee Carsley, England U21s manager, said Trafford has proven to be a “high-level goalkeeper” while Everton midfielder James Garner provided an insight into Trafford’s mentality.

"James has shown in this tournament that he's a high-level goalkeeper. He's very consistent," said Carsley. “I think it's fair to say has been very impressive in training, and the lads have been very impressed. I'm sure he's going to have a big future ahead of him."

"When you've got someone so confident and so good behind you, it gives you so much confidence," admitted Garner.

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"He's a quiet person, really, but on the pitch he's so vocal, so loud and does his job to a T every single game I've played with him. He's said he feels like he could play in a Champions League final already, that's massive confidence for such a young keeper."

His under-21s heroics, coupled with a productive loan spell at Bolton Wanderers, earned him a £19million move to Burnley making him the third most-expensive goalkeeper behind Aaron Ramsdale and Jordan Pickford.

A tough debut season, which saw him dropped for the remaining 12 games, has impacted Trafford’s stock.

But Newcastle legend Alan Shearer insisted earlier this year that Trafford shouldn’t shoulder all the blame, citing Vincent Kompany’s decision not to take him out of the firing line earlier as a “mistake”.

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“I think it’s been a really tough season for him and at times, I think he should’ve been taken out,” Shearer told The Rest Is Football podcast. “I think it’s been a mistake by Vincent [Kompany] to leave him there at times where he’s been under huge pressure, mistakes.

“And when that happens, I think you’re sometimes better off taken out of the team to sit back and have a look and reflect and give the job to someone else because goalkeeping is a very tough position anyway.

“But someone who’s so young and inexperienced, to come into the Premier League and be asked to do such a huge job, it’s a tough ask and I think it’s been unfair on him at times.”

Considering his age and the difficulties of playing in a relegated team, Trafford shouldn’t be written off any time soon.

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