Almiron will bring a new wave of fans to Newcastle United

Posted February 02, 2019

Newcastle United have agreed a deal in principle to sign Miguel Almirón from Atlanta United for a club record fee, believed to be worth up to around £20m.

Paraguay worldwide Almiron was snapped up for a club record fee by the Magpies on deadline day, putting pen-to-paper to a five-and-a-half year deal. There is plenty to get excited about, too, as the 24-year-old has been one of the stars of the MLS over the course of the last two seasons, scoring 22 goals in 62 games from midfield and winning the MLS Cup with Atlanta in 2018. It's hard to assess how big the gulf in class is because it's very subjective, but I'd say the standard of MLS is bottom half of the Championship, with the weaker teams League One standard.

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"I think it is a great responsibility, something attractive for me, and I will try to offer the best I can to repay the trust the club put in me", said the 24-year-old, who twice featured in the MLS All Star team during his time in the United States.

Rafa Benitez says he is happier than one week ago but insists it would be wrong to assume he will sign a new contract just because Newcastle have finally broken their transfer record. "When we recruited Miguel, we knew he was a fantastically talented player, who could achieve success in Atlanta, develop his game further, and, if he wished, move to a top European League. We have different kinds of players that we didn't have".

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Newcastle have also signed defender Antonio Barreca on loan from Monaco until the end of the season with the option of a permanent deal.

"From talking to the lad, you can tell that he is really focused and wants to do well".

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Barreca came through the ranks at Italian side Torino where he became an established starter before heading to the French Ligue 1 with Monaco last summer. We needed to fill some gaps in terms of positions and characteristics of players.