Arsenal weigh up January move for Newcastle starlet in contract stalemate

Freddie Woodman.
Freddie Woodman.

Arsenal are considering a January move for Newcastle United goalkeeper Freddie Woodman.

The Gazette revealed last month that Woodman was unhappy after being denied a loan move by the club in the summer.

Woodman, one of England’s brightest goalkeeping prospects, has made a handful of Under-23 appearances for United this season.

A number of clubs, including Arsenal, are monitoring Woodman’s situation at Newcastle.

The club are understood to have blocked a loan move after Woodman refused to sign a one-year contract extension on the same terms as his existing deal, which was signed before he made his first first-team debut.

Woodman – who spent the second half of last season on loan at Aberdeen – had wanted to be playing week in, week out this season.

We had clubs before, but we told them that now is not the right time, so normally he has to stay.

Rafa Benitez

The 21-year-old’s lack of first-team football is having an impact on his international career.

Woodman helped England’s Under-21s win the Toulon Tournament in the summer.

However, Woodman hasn’t played for Aidy Boothroyd’s side this season because he’s not regularly for a club.

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez addressed Woodman’s situation after the transfer window closed.

“We don’t have anyone coming saying they want him now,” said Benitez, who has four senior goalkeepers at the club. “We had clubs before, but we told them that now is not the right time, so normally he has to stay.”

United’s determination to hold on to Woodman – who has two years left on his contract – is likely to be tested in the January transfer window.