This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Aitor Karanka’s Birmingham City are keen on a move for Cardiff City goalkeeper Neil Etheridge, as per Football Insider.
The Bluebirds shot-stopper is not the number one at the Welsh outfit anymore, and Birmingham are keen on snapping him up as they search for a new senior goalkeeper.
So, would Etheridge be a good solution for the Blues?
The team here at FLW discuss….
This would be a quality addition to Aitor Karanka’s side.
It’s clear that Blues need a goalkeeper after bidding farewell to Lee Camp upon the expiration of his contract, and sending Connal Trueman out on loan to AFC Wimbledon, and a new, reliable number one is definitely needed ahead of next season.
Etheridge is a goalkeeper who possesses real leadership and composure in-between the sticks. He commands his box really well and ensures the back-line remains solid, having been such a key player for Cardiff under Neil Warnock – a manager who likes his teams to be solid and well-drilled at the back.
He kept 19 clean sheets when Cardiff won automatic promotion to the Premier League in 2017/18 so he is clearly an established, quality goalkeeper for this level, and I don’t think he’d cost an awful lot either given how he’s fallen down the pecking order in South Wales.
If Blues could bring him in, then it would be a shrewd signing and one that would strengthen them.
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There’s no two ways about it, this looks a fantastic signing for the Blues.
It wasn’t long ago that Cardiff were batting away Premier League interest for Etheridge and though his stock has fallen since then, he’s still a quality option between the sticks.
With Lee Camp leaving the club and Connal Trueman sent out on loan, Aitor Karanka is in desperate need of signing some keepers and I think a move for Etheridge makes an awful lot of sense.
The 30-year-old has shown his quality in both the Championship and Premier League and will no doubt be hungry to prove himself after falling out of favour at Cardiff.
He’s experienced but he’s certainly got a lot to give and with just a year left on his deal, it shouldn’t be too expensive. It’s a smart move for the Blues.
Etheridge losing his place in the side at Cardiff was a big call, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that he’s a good goalkeeper.
He’d be an excellent addition for Birmingham and someone that would represent a good signing for Aitor Karanka.
Of course, Blues are desperate to get a goalkeeper on board this summer after clearing the decks, but there aren’t many better options that Etheridge out there.
He’s from the top end of the market and a player that the Birmingham fans would be delighted to welcome in at St Andrew’s.