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Martin Dubravka tells the inside story of his 11th-hour move to Newcastle

Martin Dubravka. Picture by Frank Reid
Martin Dubravka. Picture by Frank Reid

Martin Dubravka has revealed how his 11th-hour move to Newcastle United went through – after a “crazy” few days.

The goalkeeper, signed on loan from Sparta Prague, joined the club on transfer deadline day last month.

I tried to stay away from the information and speculation as much as I could. My agent called me in the middle of December and said ‘there are some rumours that Newcastle are interested’. I said ‘yes, that’s perfect, but only call me when it is official’.

Martin Dubravka

“It was crazy,” said Dubravka, who starred on his debut against Manchester United.

“I tried to stay away from the information and speculation as much as I could. My agent called me in the middle of December and said ‘there are some rumours that Newcastle are interested’. I said ‘yes, that’s perfect, but only call me when it is official’.

“I tried to work hard with my team-mates during the mid-season break in Spain, but then the interest from Newcastle was in the newspapers.

“My friends were asking me if it was real or not, and I told them I didn’t know.

“Two days before the January window closed, my agent called me and told me that the clubs had made a deal and that I should fly very early in the morning.

“But then the director of Sparta Prague told me ‘I will not let you go’. On January 31, I was at the training ground with my team-mates, having dinner with them. Then, someone calls me and tells me ‘you have to go to Newcastle’.

“I didn’t know if this could happen in such a short space of time, but I got on a flight and realised that it could happen. I was flying to Newcastle to make the deal happen.”