Steve McClaren keeps goalkeeping options open at injury-hit Newcastle

Rob Elliot.
Rob Elliot.

Steve McClaren says he has full confidence in Rob Elliot at Newcastle United – but he hasn’t ruled out signing another goalkeeper in January.

McClaren lost No 1 to a season-ending injury during the international break.

We like him – he’s very good in training – and now he has to produce it in the games.

Steve McClaren

Krul ruptured his anterior cruciate knee ligament playing for Holland last weekend.

With Karl Darlow sidelined with an ankle problem, Elliot is next in line.

And Elliot will make his first appearance since December last year of the season in Sunday’s home game against Norwich City at St James’s Park on Sunday ahead of Freddie Woodman, recalled from a loan spell at Crawley Town.

Asked about Elliot’s readiness, head coach McClaren said: “He’s in as good a condition as can be without actually playing.

“He missed pre-season, but he’s certainly been training in the last few weeks.

“Even before Karl Darlow got injured, there was a possibility of Rob going away on loan, but I said ‘no, we’ll keep him here’.

“We like him – he’s very good in training – and now he has to produce it in the games.”

McClaren, however, couldn’t hide his disappointment at the loss of Krul, who had only been handed a start for Holland after Jasper Cillessen broke down in the warm-up for the Euro 2016 qualifier against Kazakhstan in Astana.

“It’s a massive blow for us – you’re talking about one of the best players in our team,” he said.

While McClaren says he has confidence in Elliot, the club’s goalkeeping situation will be reviewed ahead of the January transfer window.

“There’s a couple of months before that,” said McClaren. “I certainly think that by January, we’ll know (if another goalkeeper is needed).”