Eddie Howe admits one of three players could leave Newcastle United this summer

Newcastle United have four senior goalkeepers on their books - Nick Pope, Martin Dubravka, Karl Darlow and Mark Gillespie.

Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe admits he may be forced to part way with one of three senior goalkeepers this summer.

The £10million arrival of Nick Pope, who started the Magpies’ 2-0 Premier League opening day win against Nottingham Forest, has added competition to what was already a strong goalkeeping department.

Martin Dubravka is closest to rivalling Pope for the No.1 spot after being named on the bench versus Forest. Karl Darlow and Mark Gillespie, meanwhile, were left out of the matchday squad.

Howe wants to keep all four goalkeepers but admits that may not be possible with the 44-year-old likely to name just three in his 25-man Premier League squad.

“It’s too early to say,” Howe said when asked about the goalkeeping situation. “I don’t know.

“Certainly, I wouldn’t want anyone to leave but I’m well aware four is a difficult number to carry.

“My wish would be to do that but obviously I’ve got to think of the players as well.

“Hopefully we’ll make the right decision.”

Howe opted to start with Pope over Dubravka for the victory over Forest, where Fabian Schar and Callum Wilson scored, and insisted it was a “very, very, very difficult decision.”

Pope kept a clean sheet but did not have a save to make all game, although did claim a few dangerous crosses.

Newcastle United goalkeeper Nick Pope.
Newcastle United goalkeeper Nick Pope.
Newcastle United goalkeeper Nick Pope.

Howe said: “I’ve got three quality goalkeepers to pick from in Karl, Nick and Martin, last season, was excellent.

“Certainly, my decision to pick Nick wasn’t a reflection on him, it is more of a reflection on Nick and how good I think he is.

“I thought he was excellent today - his ability to come for crosses. He commanded his box very well and kicked well so really pleased with him.

“He didn’t have a lot to do with his hands, which is a good sign.

“There’s competition for places in that position as well, and I think that strength will help us through the season.”