Liverpool should target a move for Burnley shot stopper Tom Heaton, should Simon Mignolet move on in the summer, writes Sam May.
The experienced Burnley goalkeeper, 30, who has made 140 appearances or so for the Clarets since his arrival in 2010.
Having spent 13 years at Manchester United from the age of eight, Heaton had two seasons at Cardiff City and one at Bristol City, before moving to Burnley. He has moved down and back up from the Championship. It has been a rollercoaster ride but the club’s values, as preached by the manager, Sean Dyche, are set in stone.
It is clear, Mignolet will not stay at Anfield to be second-choice, behind the Reds No 1 Loris Karius and has previously hinted at his desire to leave the club, if the situation doesn’t change.
The Belgium goalkeeper, 28, was previously quoted saying: “I don’t want to be a No. 2, that’s clear. I want to play,” he said.
“I will never give up fighting because that’s not in my character to just give up.
“Secondly, because I am not in a situation where I can sit on the bench. I’m 28 years old and I want to play week-in, week-out.
“So I’ll work hard and I’ll never give up—giving up is not what I want to do. I see it as a challenge that I can overcome.
“So hopefully it will be a fair challenge based on performances put in on the pitch.”
Perhaps some would say Heaton is too good to be a No 2 goalkeeper, but the Reds should look no further should Mignolet seek pastures new. The England international is experienced, good with the ball at his feet and an all round great stopper.
Heaton was already having a fine season, but it will be tough for any Premier League goalkeeper to beat this fantastic performance against Manchester United last weekend. He made 11 saves, and gave a keepers masterclass to help shut out Mourinho’s side.
He’s working towards a top class club move, and have no doubt, if he did sign for the Reds he will seriously challenge Karius for the number one shirt.