Date: 15th December 2018 at 11:30am
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According to the Football Insider, Leeds United lead Aston Villa in the race for Karl Darlow. Marcelo Bielsa reportedly wants to loan the Newcastle United goalkeeper as ‘cover and competition’ for Bailey Peacock-Farrell who has been first-choice between the sticks all season, but here’s why Villa will beat the Whites to Darlow’s signature.

The 28-year-old could be available for a temporary move away from St James’ Park as a result of a lack of playing time this season. Darlow has spent the campaign on the bench, playing second fiddle to Martin Dubravka. He was an unused substitute in Newcastle’s first 12 Premier League games before Freddie Woodman edged him out of the matchday squad. He won’t want to be on the Leeds bench.

If Villa signed Darlow in January, it would be to replace Orjan Nyland as first-choice goalkeeper. Dean Smith doesn’t trust the summer signing from FC Ingolstadt and appointed a goalkeeper coach to try and improve his performances. It hasn’t worked, however, and the club continue to be linked with out-of-favour goalkeepers based in the UK – Tom Heaton (Burnley) and Fraser Forster (Southampton) have been mentioned as potential loan targets.

Darlow is certainly an attainable target for Smith. He would surely prefer regular first-team football at Villa Park over being on the bench at Leeds.

Read Crippy Cooke’s previous article

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