Achraf Lazaar back in first-team fold at Newcastle

Achraf Lazaar has been training with Rafa Benitez's first team at Newcastle United.
Achraf Lazaar.Achraf Lazaar.
Achraf Lazaar.

The defender, frozen out by Benitez last year, was told to find a new club in the summer.

However, a move to Genoa broke down in August and Lazaar returned to train at the club's Academy.

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Lazaar has made three appearances for the club's Under-23 side.

Benitez said last month that it was "positive" that Lazaar, signed from Palermo two years ago, was getting minutes on the pitch.

United's called up Lazaar and a number of his Under-23 team-mates to training this week.

Lazaar was pictured in a training gallery published by the club.

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Benitez, looking to make up the numbers during the international break, also called up midfielder Matty Longstaff, who scored in Tuesday night's 3-2 Checkatrade Trophy win over Grimsby Town.

Goalkeeper Nathan Harker and defender Owen Bailey were also involved in the session.