Who is Mikel Merino? the Newcastle midfielder on Real Madrid and Barcelona agendas

24 October at 16:30
La Liga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona are following the progress of Newcastle United’s former Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mikel Merino.

Merino has become a vital part of the Magpies repertoire under Rafael Benitez this season and he even scored his first Premier League goal recently in the 1-0 win against Crystal Palace.

Merino’s Newcastle teammate Rob Elliot told the Independent, talking of interest from Barcelona and the Los Blancos: "It's only a matter of time before Barcelona and Real Madrid go for him. We are also in the elite. We want Mikel to stay here and Newcastle will not sell more players. "

Merino joined Newcastle United initially on a season-long loan and his move to the club from the North of England was made permanent this past month on a five-year contract.

The move came after his time at Borussia Dortmund had seen the Spaniard make only two starts last season, making just six appearances from the bench and having joined from Osasuna in the summer of 2016.

A box to box midfielder by trade, Merino has been used in deep midfield by Benitez in win balls in the heart of the park and recycle the ball forward with purpose.
 

Kaustubh Pandey

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