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Brighton & Hove Albion have had a difficult start to life in the Premier League, in their first season in the top flight in 34 years.
The Seagulls, after securing an automatic promotion back to the top tier, via a second-place finish in the EFL Championship last season, have found it difficult to bring their A game to the new season. The transfer window too hasn’t really gone too well for the club, despite them recruiting heavily.
As many as 12 new faces have come through the doors at the Amex stadium over the past couple of months. Most have little to no experience in English football, which could hamper them adapting to the league in their very first season.
So, when the club announced the signing of experienced goalkeeper Tim Krul, on loan, from fellow newly-promoted side Newcastle United, on the deadline day, it will have sweetened the transfer window a bit for the Seagulls.
In Matthew Ryan, who was signed from Valencia early in the summer, they have a goalkeeper of good standards and an international player who is currently Australia’s No.1 between the sticks. Yet, his lack of experience at the top level is something that cannot be overlooked. With the only viable backup being Niki Maenpaa, the Seagulls needed a new custodian in their ranks to push Ryan.
In signing Krul, they have not just got a keeper, but a player who has played at this level for over 10 years and knows the Premier League in and out. The 29-year old Netherlands international is immensely experienced, having featured in a total of 157 Premier League games for the Magpies and knows what it takes to succeed at this level.
Krul might not have played a lot over the last couple of seasons due to a serious injury in the 2015/16 campaign when Newcastle were relegated. He hardly played in the first half of last season, when he was on loan at Dutch side Ajax, but did have chances come his way once he moved to AZ Alkmaar on a temporary deal in January. The 29-year old performed more than decently for AZ, keeping four clean sheets in 20 outings.
A proven goalkeeper at this level and on the international stages as well, Krul is someone who will come into the team and increase the overall quality of the Seagulls’ roster. Given his years of experience and the know-how in the English top division, the Dutchman will be able to impart all his knowledge on Ryan, which will only help Brighton in the longer run. A leader on the field and in the dressing room, Krul will add an authoritative presence which will definitely aid them as they look to recover from the faltering start they have had. He could prove to be a very good signing for them.