Norwich City, Leeds United and Sheffield United look the most likely Championship clubs to join Burnley in next season’s Premier League.
The Burnley goalkeeper, Nick Pope, is being looked at by clubs ‘getting promoted from the Championship’, according to The Sun. Norwich City, Leeds United and Sheffield United are the three who currently lead the way in England’s second tier, but which of those are the most likely Pope suitors, with Burnley reportedly set to cash in?
The Canaries employ just two senior goalkeepers, Tim Krul and Michael McGovern. And, despite a successful campaign, collectively, Krul’s ability has at times come into question, while McGovern is out of contract this summer. Pope is therefore a logical target should Norwich achieve promotion, especially having grown up not too far from Carrow Road in Soham, Cambridgeshire. That said, he is a former Ipswich Town youth team player and season ticket holder.
In Kiko Casilla, the former Real Madrid goalkeeper signed in January, the Whites finally appear to have solved their goalkeeping issues. However, an experienced competitor could well be sought should Leeds return to the Premier League. Pope, though, will surely favour regular first-team football after losing his place at Burnley – not least in a European Championship season.
Verdict: Least likely
The Blades made, arguably, the signing of the Championship season in Dean Henderson, but the on-loan Manchester United goalkeeper may not be back term, and would need replacing. Pope to Bramall Lane certainly makes sense – provided Sheffield United are a Premier League club.
Verdict: Most likely
Could Pope be a target for anyone else?
Of the cashing pack (fourth to 11th), Middlesbrough, Derby County, Bristol City, Preston North End, Nottingham Forest and Sheffield Wednesday may have cause to upgrade/replace their ‘keepers, although West Bromwhich Albion and Aston Villa have recently made long-term additions in Pope’s position.