Newcastle United are reportedly considering a January approach for Tottenham Hotspur outcast Hugo Lloris as they weigh up their remaining goalkeeping options.
The Magpies will be working without first-choice stopper Nick Pope for around four months owing to the shoulder injury he sustained in last weekend's 1-0 win over Manchester United.
Pope underwent an operation after dislocating his shoulder against the Red Devils, forcing Martin Dubravka to deputise in goal for Thursday's 3-0 loss to relegation-battling Everton.
While Dubravka proved his worth to Newcastle before Pope's arrival, the latter's injury has inevitably led to a whirlwind of transfer stories ahead of the opening of the January window.
Free agent David de Gea has been strongly linked with a switch to St James' Park, having been without a club since being released by Man United at the end of his contract this summer.
Howe has denied that talks have already taken place with Lloris's entourage, though, and according to The Mirror, Newcastle have also set their sights on a possible swoop for Lloris.
The former France international and World Cup winner has been frozen out of the Tottenham setup under Ange Postecoglou, who brought Guglielmo Vicario to the club as his new number one for his debut season.
On the back of an error-strewn 2022-23 season, Lloris was expected to end his lengthy association with Tottenham over the summer before departing as a free agent when his deal expired in 2024.
Lloris was left out of Spurs' pre-season tour squad to explore transfer opportunities away from Tottenham, but the right offer did not arrive, and the 36-year-old remains contracted to the North London giants.
Newcastle are understood to have tried and failed to sign Lloris on deadline day over the summer, as the ex-Lyon man was not open to joining a new team so late in the transfer window.
The Magpies hierarchy apparently still rate Lloris highly, though, and the club could try again for a loan deal in January, although Tottenham would prefer a permanent sale in order to recoup a nominal fee.
Lloris has kept 151 clean sheets in 444 appearances for Tottenham since joining the Lilywhites from Lyon in 2012, but he only managed seven shut-outs in 25 appearances during the 2022-23 league season.
De Gea remains an alternative option to Lloris and is thought to be open to a Premier League return, while Paris Saint-Germain number two Keylor Navas could also be tempted to the North East.