Stoke City will play in the second tier of English football for the first time in ten years, following their relegation from the Premier League last season.
The fall to the Championship often means a club’s star players are snapped up by the remaining top flight sides, and it has been no different for the Potters this summer, with Xherdan Shaqiri signing for Liverpool.
As we edge towards the start of the new campaign, the future of Stoke’s star goalkeeper Jack Butland remains unknown.
Having been linked with a number of moves away from the Bet365 Stadium throughout the transfer window, it is essential that Potters head coach Gary Rowett has a back-up ready to take over the starting goalkeeper position for the start of the season.
Despite chopping and changing their goalkeepers last season, Premier League side Watford have made use of four different shot stoppers in their pre-season matches to date.
Last season’s number one Heurelho Gomes and recent signing Ben Foster look like the probable candidates to take the starting spot for the Hornets this campaign, while Austrian Daniel Bachmann and Swedish international Pontus Dahlberg’s roles remain unknown.
Dahlberg signed for Watford in January this year on a five-and-a-half year contract from Swedish first division side IFK Goteborg, but was loaned back to his former club for the remainder of that season.
The 19-year-old already has played a full international game for Sweden under the reign of manager Janne Andersson, but has never made a first team appearance for Watford.
However, he has nonetheless featured for Javi Gracia’s side throughout their pre-season tour.
While the youngster might not be a household name, Dahlberg has bags of potential and the ability to take over duties at the bet365 Stadium if Butland was to depart.
Signing the Hornets back-up on loan would be a terrific move for Stoke, Watford and Dahlberg himself, as it will not only give the young stopper valuable experience in the English football leagues, but Stoke would be getting a talented shot stopper who is all but certain to be a future Premier League starter.
The Potters conceded 68 goals last season, which was the joint most out of the entire Premier League, and can be sure that they will face more tough opposition in the Championship this coming season.
Rowett must acquire a new goalkeeper before the transfer window shuts, especially if the England international is to leave the club, so why not take a risk on Dahlberg?