The Dutchman has not played for the club since October 2015 after suffering a horrific cruciate ligament injury but appears to have set his sights on a return almost two years on, during which time the club could be relegated and promoted, as well as having changed their manager and almost the entire playing staff.
Krul would encounter a new-look Newcastle, albeit one still on the lookout for a reliable number one. That man looked certain to be Karl Darlow until a couple of high-profile errors raised one or two doubts.
However, far from recapturing his pre-injury best during a season on loan away from St James’ Park, 2016/17 has turned into something of a nightmare for the 28-year-old. A first half of the season at Ajax culminated in appearences only for the club’s reserve side and, although he has cemented his position as first choice at AZ Alkmaar, the stats do not make good reading.
Krul has conceded 24 goals in nine games between the sticks since arriving at the 2009 Eredivisie champions, including 11 in a Europa League round of 16 tie with Lyon over two legs, the heaviest ever defeat suffered by a Dutch side in continental competition.
And, in the weekend’s 5-2 defeat by runaway league leaders Feyenoord, WhoScored rated Krul as comfortably the worst player on the pitch with a rating of just 4.4. And while he was left rather helpless by the first four, he raced off his line and completely missed the ball late on, allowing Nicolai Jorgensen to complete the humiliation with a simple tap in.
Krul may want to return but should Newcastle take him back?