Mark Hughes hopeful of new contract for Stoke City and England goalkeeper Jack Butland

1 Mar

Stoke manager Mark Hughes has welcomed the prospect of the club handing another new contract to goalkeeper Jack Butland.

Butland, who joined the Potters in January 2013 on a four-and-a-half-year deal, only signed a fresh contract with them taking him through to 2019 around a year ago.

The 22-year-old has since succeeded the departed Asmir Begovic as first-choice stopper and has put in a series of impressive displays this season.

Reports have suggested he is set to be rewarded with a significant pay rise as part of another new deal, to 2021.

And when asked on Tuesday about the talk of Stoke looking to do that, Hughes said: “I wouldn’t be averse to it.

“Jack has only just signed a long-term deal, but that was just prior to the situation we had with Asmir in terms of what his future held (Begovic joined Chelsea over the summer).

“At that point Jack wasn’t the confirmed number one, which he is now, so circumstances have changed somewhat and I think that is the thinking behind looking and revisiting the contract situation again.”

Hughes – speaking at his press conference ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League home clash with Newcastle – stressed he was “not privy to the details” in terms of what Butland might be offered.

The 52-year-old rates the England international so highly that he believes he is one of the best goalkeepers in the top flight: “Yes – and the chief executive (Tony Scholes) won’t thank me for saying that because it makes his negotiations more difficult!

“I think Jack has shown that over the games he has played this season. It is still early days – he hasn’t had a period where his form has hit a plateau, which can happen with younger goalkeepers, so he is very mindful of that.

“But I think his manner and personality is very calm and that those periods will be few and far between.”


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