AFTER Martin Dubravka underwent recent foot surgery, Newcastle United will learn how long they'll be without their number one goalkeeper today or tomorrow.

The Slovakian has been suffering with the long standing problem since pre-season last year. After aggravating the injury whilst on international duty in the European Chamionships, the decision was made for Dubravka to go under the knife for surgery. 

The 32-year-old has been on Tyneside since January 2018 after signing on an intial loan deal from Sparta Prague before making the deal permanent in the summer.

He's held the number one spot ever since going on to make over 100 appearances. 

While Steve Bruce will be hopeful that surgery has fixed the problem, he's well aware he might have to do without his number one for a considerable amount of time. 

"Martin picked up a foot injury with his country at the Euros, and is having an operation" said Bruce.

"He picked up something similar last pre-season, running in the woods. He complained of it during the Championships so we'll not know until the next 24 to 48 hours and then we'll see how long he's out and what we need to do."

The absence of Dubravka will present an opportunity for the likes of Karl Darlow and Freddie Woodman. 

The pair are currently serving a period of self isolation alongside fellow keeper Mark Gillespie after Darlow contracted COVID-19. 

Woodman was expected to seal a loan move to Championship side Bournemouth during the summer as he looks to continue gaining regular first-team football but Dubravka's news may well force the hand of Bruce to keep hold of the 24-year-old. 

The Northern Echo: Freddie Woodman in action whilst on loan with Swansea City.Freddie Woodman in action whilst on loan with Swansea City.

"I understand Freddie will be a little bit disappointed at this moment but I've got to do what's best for Newcastle and I'll always do that. The club comes first.

"Karl Darlow, unfortunately, picked up Covid. So we felt it best that the people who were close to him, ie during dinner, self-isolate, so we pulled them out of the group.

"The group has been tested for the last three days. Thankfully everybody else is negative. It shows you we’re not immune to it. We’ve tried our utmost, but it still lingers around, which is difficult to manage."

The Northern Echo has launched a new Facebook group dedicated to Newcastle United fans. 

The Newcastle United Echo Chamber is an interactive community group on Facebook where we keep you informed with the very latest at your club with news on transfers, fixtures, rumours, players, and everything else at the club from top to bottom. 

It's also a safe space to get in touch with your memories and nostalgia, get stuff off your chest about your team and have some fun with fellow members. We'd love to hear about your memories and stories of the Magpies.

You can join the Echo Chamber here: Newcastle United Echo Chamber.