Rafa Benitez reveals how his Newcastle United players reacted to Antonio Barreca's first training session

Antonio Barreca impressed his Newcastle United team-mates in his first training session.

Friday, 1st February 2019, 5:32 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 4:02 pm
Antonio Barreca.

The left-back joined the club on loan from Monaco on transfer deadline day.

Newcastle also signed Miguel Almiron from Atlanta United in a £21million deal.

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Barreca, unlike Almiron, is eligible to play in this afternoon's game against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley.

And the 23-year-old caught the eye in training yesterday.

Benitez – who kept midfielder Isaac Hayden at the club – says the players are even more "positive" following the arrivals of Barreca and Almiron, who is ineligible to train and play while he waits for a work permit.

"For me, we have two players we didn’t have," said United's manager. "I’m happier than before. Why? We have two players we didn’t have.

"Also, Hayden. I had the conversation with him the other day. He was fine. He knew what he wanted.

"He was a very good professional. He's quite happy to stay here, and has shown his commitment in the games. It’s another positive.

"Then you have the other players – you can see they are more positive. They can see. We were training, Barreca was doing well. I was a player. When you see someone new come and he’s doing things right, you think 'ah right, OK”.

"But that’s good for the team.

"I think everybody is a little bit happier, we won and we have two new faces."