Newcastle's latest signing, Mikel Merino, has spoken about why he feels he'll be a good fit in the English top flight, claiming that he's physically and technically capable.
The 21-year-old joins the Magpies on loan from Borussia Dortmund, and the Tyneside outfit have an obligation to buy after a certain amount of appearances for the club, but Merino claims that he is ready for the coming season at St James' Park:
“I think I am strong enough to play in this league,” Merino told the Shield's Gazette. “Also, I have the technical ability to be here. Let’s see how it goes."
The Spaniard also revealed that there were plenty of offers on the table, but the lure of Rafa Benitez pulled him towards Newcastle.
“I had different offers and different options,
“I think this is a great club and the right place to play and develop myself. With this coach and the crowd, I think this is the right place.
“For me, it was a big factor. He’s a Spanish coach and has an incredible career. I think I can improve a lot with him.”
Merino is known mostly as a defensive midfielder, but can also get forward and help in attack too.
“I’m a midfielder with a lot of potential,” he said.
“I always like to help my team-mates with and without the ball.
“I like to play with the ball and control the game. I’m strong enough for one-on-one duels.
“I always want to attack and score goals and help the team go forward, but of course we know defence is a really important part of the game.”
Merino is set to make his debut for the club in their pre-season friendly against Mainz in the Opel Arena.