Martin Dubravka believes that Newcastle United can be even stronger next season – when he hopes to be back at St James’s Park.
The goalkeeper spent the second half of the season on loan at the club from Sparta Prague.
Dubravka was outstanding between the posts as Rafa Benitez’s side climbed away from the Premier League’s relegation zone.
There was an option in the half-season loan for Newcastle to make the move permanent.
Benitez said earlier this month that it would be an “easy” deal to do, and United have already drawn up a contract for the Slovakia international.
“If he’s happy, we’re happy with him,” said Benitez.
“It’s easy, we have plenty of time.”
It will be easy for Dubravka to commit to the club.
Asked if he wanted to stay, Dubravka said: “I would like to, of course.
“It’s a huge club with a great history, amazing fans and quality players.
Standing with the best players in the world ... I’m so proud of it. I’m so happy that I could play these games. Also, I’m happy that we stayed in the league.Martin Dubravka
“We will see what’s going to happen.”
Dubravka had long “dreamed” about playing in one of Europe’s big leagues.
And the 29-year-old seized his chance with both hands.
“I was dreaming of one of the big leagues since I was really young,” said Dubravka, who made 12 Premier League starts for Newcastle.
“It was something special for me. Of course, you have some idols, and (Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper) Hugo Lloris was one of these idols. I was so happy that I could be on the pitch with him.
“He’s an amazing player and an amazing person.”
Dubravka was a substitute for United’s game against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park after arriving in England.
He made his debut the following weekend against Manchester United.
Dubravka kept a clean sheet in what proved to be a pivotal 1-0 win over the team.
“When I was arriving in Newcastle, I didn’t know what to expect,” said Dubravka.
“I was sitting on the bench watching the tempo and intensity. I was trying to adapt as soon as possible.
“After the Man United game, everything went so fast.
“Every training session, I just learned from my team-mates. I appreciated that they were helping me.
“Even after the games, they were speaking with me all the time.
“As I said at the beginning, we’ll see what will happen.”
Dubravka was “proud” to represent Newcastle in the Premier League.
The club ended the campaign in 10th place after a 3-0 win over Chelsea on the final day of the season.
Dubravka, however, believes the club can build on his achievements this season – and carry on up the league.
“Standing with the best players in the world ... I’m so proud of it,” said Dubravka.
“I’m so happy that I could play these games. Also, I’m happy that we stayed in the league.
“Next season, so us, hopefully we can bring the same attitude, level that we played.”
And Dubravka added: “I really hope that next season we will show that we are stronger.”