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Mark Gillespie should stay in Newcastle's 25-man squad - opinion

Newcastle United’s third-choice goalkeeper Mark Gillespie is yet to make a Premier League appearance since he joined. He signed in 2020 as a free agent after his contract with Motherwell expired (Sky Sports).

Gillespie was a Toon fan growing up and part of the youth academy. When he was 16-years-old he made the move to Carlisle. So for him joining Newcastle once again will have been a dream come true.

He’s yet to make an appearance in the top flight for his boyhood club. He’s only played in the cup for Newcastle and it’s clear since he joined that his role is to be the number three in the Magpies’ pecking order.

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Gillespie should remain as the third choice, despite a potential shake-up between the sticks

There have been talks that Newcastle are looking to sign a new keeper this summer. The likes of Dean Henderson (The Northern Echo) and Bernd Leno (Daily Mail) have been listed as potential targets.

This likely means Freddie Woodman, who is on loan at Bournemouth, may leave this summer. He’s still young and will probably want to see if he can play first-team football somewhere else. Sadly, he may struggle to get it at St James’ Park.

As for Karl Darlow, he also might want to try his hand at getting consistent minutes at another club. Middlesbrough reportedly have their sights on him this summer as they look for a new number one.

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So Newcastle may need to hold on to Mark Gillespie as the third choice. Darlow or Woodman surely won’t settle for that role at the club. Additionally, the rules of the Premier League state a club needs at least eight ‘homegrown players.’

Gillespie does classify as a ‘homegrown player’ so if new recruits arrive this summer, the Toon need to keep that rule in mind.

He’s been with the Magpies for two years and seems happy with the role he plays. In recent years we’ve seen other clubs do similar things. For example, Scott Carson is the third-choice keeper for Manchester City. Lee Grant did the same for Manchester United.

As long as he’s happy, Gillespie should continue as Newcastle’s number three goalkeeper.

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