Manchester City agree deal with keeper Ortega, Nick Pope seals Newcastle move

Manchester City have a verbal agreement to sign the goalkeeper Stefan Ortega as backup to Ederson if Zack Steffen leaves in search of more game time. Ortega’s contract at Arminia Bielefeld expires at the end of this month and the 29-year-old German, who has also played for 1860 Munich, has made City his preferred destination.

He started all but one of Arminia’s Bundesliga games last season, missing the other because he had Covid, and played every minute for the club in the league in 2020-21.

Steffen was largely restricted to appearances for City in the domestic cups and faces a battle to be the starting goalkeeper for the US at the World Cup. He missed this month’s international matches for family reasons.

In other news, Newcastle have completed the signing of goalkeeper Nick Pope from Burnley on a four-year deal. The England international has sealed his move after the clubs agreed a fee in the region of £10m.

“Now I’m here, I can’t wait to get started,” Pope said. “The deal has taken a couple of weeks to come to fruition, but it got over the line really quickly. I’m delighted to be here and really looking forward to getting stuck into it.”

Nick Pope is unveiled as a Newcastle player.
Nick Pope is unveiled as a Newcastle player. Photograph: Serena Taylor/Newcastle United/Getty Images

“Nick is an exceptional Premier League and international-level goalkeeper, so I’m very pleased to be adding strong competition to a very important position,” said the Newcastle manager, Eddie Howe. “I’m delighted he is joining us as we prepare for the exciting challenge ahead.”

The 30-year-old is expected to provide a strong challenge to Martin Dubravka for the No 1 spot at St James’ Park, and is the club’s second summer signing after full-back Matt Targett’s loan move was made permanent earlier this month.

Pope’s arrival at Newcastle is a boost for West Ham as they look to sign goalkeeper Alphonse Areola on a permanent deal from Paris Saint-Germain. The Magpies were reportedly interested in Areola, who spent last season on loan at the London Stadium, but West Ham now look set to secure an agreement for about £10.5m.

The RB Leipzig forward Christopher Nkunku has extended his contract to 2026. The 24-year-old, who had attracted interest from clubs including Chelsea, has a release clause valid from next summer. The figure is €60m (£51.6m) but could grow as he gets further into his deal.


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