Arsenal legend delivers verdict on Newcastle United star Nick Pope amid England number one claim

Arsenal legend David Seaman believes Newcastle United goalkeeper Nick Pope will be handed a chance to impress England manager Gareth Southgate over the next two games.

The Magpies stopper linked up with the Three Lions squad earlier this week as they prepare for Nations League fixtures with Italy and Germany.

Pope has enjoyed an impressive start to life at St James Park after making a £10million summer switch from Burnley.

The 30-year-old has produced a number of eye-catching performances for Eddie Howe’s side, keeping three clean sheets in their opening seven Premier League games.

That has led to suggestions Pope could challenge Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford for the England number one shirt on a regular basis.

Pickford - who Seaman insisted will remain Southgate’s first choice - will miss both Nations League fixtures with an injury - and the former Arsenal keeper expects Pope and Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale to both receive opportunities over the coming days.

Speaking to talkSPORT, he said: “England’s number one is definitely Jordan Pickford, there’s no doubt about that. He’s done brilliantly for England, you can’t question that.

“People question him sometimes at Everton but even at the end of last season he showed why he’s England number one because he made some big saves at crucial times when the pressure was on but obviously he’s out.

“Going into these two games I think Nick (Pope) and Aaron (Ramsdale) will get a game each. For me Aaron’s the number two, Nick’s doing really well at Newcastle.

“I think he’s getting a lot more to do than what he thought he might be doing because I thought he’d be a bit less than what he had at Burnley but from what I’m seeing he’s getting a lot to do at Newcastle.

“It’s different with Aaron, because Arsenal are top of the league, not getting as much to do but that’s much more like playing an international game where you don’t get a lot to do and all of a sudden you’re called upon to be at your best. It’s a good learning curve for Aaron.”

Pope will hope to add to his eight caps and extend a record of conceding just one goal during those appearances.