Miguel Almiron will start his Newcastle United career in earnest today.
Almiron, signed from Atlanta United in a club-record £21million deal on transfer deadline day, travelled to Paris after signing a five-and-a-half year deal at St James’s Park to get a work permit.
The Paraguay international was not allowed to train with his new team-mates before getting the paperwork.
Almiron – who hasn’t played a competitive game since the MLS Cup final on December 8 – trained on his own during the Major League Soccer off-season to he could be ready for a possible move.
And United manager Rafa Benitez will now assess the 24-year-old attacking midfielder’s readiness to play between now and Monday night, when his team takes on Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux.
Speaking after the weekend’s 1-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley, Benitez said: “I think he will be fine with the visa and the work permit, and hopefully then he will train with the team,
“We will see how fit he is, because he was starting the pre-season in America. Hopefully, he will be fine.”
Antonio Barreca, United’s other January signing, made his debut against Tottenham.
The 23-year-old left-back, signed on loan from Monaco, came off the bench late in the game, which has left the club 15th in the Premier League ahead of the Wolves game.
Newcastle are two points above the relegation zone with 13 games left to play.
Benitez could have Mohamed Diame, Paul Dummett and Ki Sung-yueng back from injury at Molineux.