On Tuesday, Norwich City fans were brought the news that former Newcastle and Brighton goalkeeper Tim Krul was to join the Canaries of a two-year deal – and fans are right to be getting excited.
Attracting a man who has made 184 appearances for the Magpies in the top-flight and eight caps for the Netherlands is no easy feat, so full credit must go to Stuart Webber and his team for luring him to Carrow Road, despite possible interest from Turkish side Besiktas.
The 30-year old is someone who fits the Daniel Farke mould in some ways, but not necessarily in every aspect.
City’s German head coach is often seen to be taking on players who have lost their way in l – take Jordan Rhodes, Moritz Leitner and Tom Trybull as examples – and transforming them back to their former selves.
Norwich’s new number one is no exception.
Having suffered a serious ACL injury in 2015, loan spells at Ajax and Brighton have failed to reignite his career, with the Dutchman making just five first-team appearances in the whole of the last campaign for the Seagulls, noticeably, none in the league.
So, with the signing completed, what exactly can we expect from our latest Colney arrival? For one, his technical ability is something that the squad have been crying out for, if pre-season performances are anything to go by.
Putting any sentiment to one side, it is clear that Gorleston-born Remi Matthews doesn’t currently possess the technical ability necessary to distribute the ball from the back in the way that Daniel Farke desires.
That isn’t to say that those skills won’t develop over the next 12 months, but for now, having Krul will certainly allow the Canaries to play their German coaches’ brand of football.
Having a straight battle between Matthews and Michael McGovern for the first-choice keeper berth wouldn’t have necessarily been a bad thing, but the injection of a man whose penalty-saving abilities helped Louis Van-Gaal’s Dutch team into the 2014 World Cup semi-finals can only make things better.
Perhaps having Tim in the building will be a blessing. He clearly has a lot of technical ability, in addition to an abundance of experience and big-game knowhow, so passing that knowledge onto someone who could still be City’s first choice-man going forward is something that can only benefit all parties.
One thing that makes Krul’s arrival surprising is his age. In keeping terms, he is arguably in his prime, but in the grander scheme of what Daniel Farke is trying to create, his move is somewhat an anomaly.
Farke has never really shown a desire to sign anyone over the age of 28 or 29, which is understandable given his prior experience with working with younger players in the Under 23s at Borussia Dortmund.
Aside from Timm Klose, 30, Alex Tettey, 32, Michael McGovern, 34, and the potentially outgoing Russell Martin, 32, everyone else in the ranks are 29 and below.
Maybe the arrival of Krul is indicative of Farke’s newfound understanding that his squad must have the right blend of youth and experience.
Defensively, Norwich were relatively astute for the second-half of last year, but they still looked like they could use a little more big-game understanding in their back four or five.
Aside from Klose and centre-back partner Grant Hanley, the majority of their other defenders are still relatively new to the tough nature of the Championship. Felix Passlack, Max Aarons, Ben Godfrey and Jamal Lewis are all under the age of 21 and will need some solidarity behind them if they are thrust into the Championship spotlight.
Matthews may not have necessarily lacked that solidarity, but having a back three of Hanley, Klose and Krul would be an extremely positive base to work from.
It may have come later in the window that some might have expected, but Tim Krul is well and truly in the building and the race for the starting spot at Birmingham on the opening weekend will start to hot up now.
However, in terms of the type of goalkeeper that Farke craves, and if his style is to propel Norwich City up the league table and towards the play-offs, their new Dutch shot-stopper is certainly in pole position.