As A Youngster It’s Difficult To Do Well When The Coach Doesn’t Rate You

Newcastle fans have been really impressed with new boy Mikel Merino who has played excellently for us this season after initially signing on loan from Borussia Dortmund and then making the move permanent for around £7M a few weeks ago.

So it was surprising to realize last season at Borussia Dortmund Mikel only appeared 11 times for the Bundesliga club.

When Mikel came here in August, he said he didn’t have the confidence of then Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel, who left the club after last season and may now be a candidate for the vacant Everton job.

Thomas Tuchel – former Borussia Dortmund manager

Jurgen Koers is a reporter for the Ruhr Nachrichten newspaper in Dortmund, and he has commented on the new Newcastle star:

“Dortmund are known for signing young and talented players and Merino’s background in Spain and with Spain’s U21s was promising, but it was interesting that he signed very early.”

“I am not sure if the club’s hierarchy and manager Thomas Tuchel had the same opinion of him.”

“Tuchel was never satisfied with Merino’s development and performances, he is a very demanding manager and Merino wasn’t too self-confident in the beginning, so they missed each other.”

“It was difficult for him, in central defensive midfield, German international Julian Weigl didn’t miss games.”

“He was Tuchel’s number one. Nuri Sahin, a Dortmund hero and Turkish international, was number two. So Tuchel insisted Merino should become a central defender.”

“Tuchel said he needed him when blocking any loan move in January 2017, which he did not, so he lost another six months.”

The Spanish U21 International was said to have jumped at the chance to join Newcastle during the summer, and Rafa told him how he would use him in the team and improve him as a player.

Rafa rates the 21-year-old and thinks he can become a full Spanish International in future years.

As a manager, you usually get what you expect from people, and Mikel has quickly become one of the stars at Newcastle and looks to have an excellent future on Tyneside.

Mikel was a terrific signing in the summer by Rafa and let’s hope he is fit to play at home on Saturday against Bournemouth, although it doesn’t look too good at the moment.

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Comments welcome.

9 comments so far

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Oct 31, 2017 at 12:59 PM

    Comment #1

    Ancient…I think being dropped would be good for Joselu just like it was to Hayden, Shelvey, Clark and Lejeuen…

    …it’s good because they get a chance again to make their case…they are not just casted aside for a long time!

    It also tells you that someone else is there breathing down your neck if you are not performing…and different games just need a different player!

    I was a hard watch to get through last night…and it’s like this where you realise me all just humans…even Rafa!

  • hibbit

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #2

    the problem is who is going to put pressure on Joselu
    Gayles not not up to the task, and there a lot more to this Mitro situation than we are aware of

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:14 PM

    Comment #3

    So you did watch it Jesper 😀 bet you wish you’d never bothered.

  • sing in the corner

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:14 PM

    Comment #4

    Just a quick pop in ..
    Absence makes the heart grow fonder. And this seems to be the case with Mitro.
    A little while ago most people but the hardest core Mitrophile dubbed the Serbian an inconsistent, leaden footed fella, not a natural finisher, and someone who couldn’t anticipate, or move well. And that’s before you get into the discipline argument.
    I’m fine with changing the team, but let’s not pretend that if we don’t create service for Mitro, like we haven’t for Joselu for the last 4 games, then the goals will fly in..
    And when they don’t, is it ‘Off with Mitro’s head?’
    I still say Joselu is the better option when the competition is Mitro, and that seems to be the main choice at present, but that’s just my opinion.

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:15 PM

    Comment #5

    Does anyone think Rafa would have let Darryl Murphy go if he knew he could only sign Joselu??

    The big man would have been perfect for this season and would have given us more budget for other players!

    We have struggled against teams who have made us favourites so thats 3 defeats and 1 win out of those games ! Bournemouth won’t be as well drilled so could allow us to create more chances but they work hard so will be a tough game!

    A lot of our players look knackered though the fact we are doing a lot of running and not having the ball for long periods is taking its toll Richie, Perez and Atsu all faded pretty badly in the 2nd half

  • magscar

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:21 PM

    Comment #6

    I think Rafa has little faith in us scoring several goals away from home and so his philosophy is to stay compact, not press to high up pitch and keep shape. After Huddersfield game (which he also thought hinged on one mistake) he was quoted as sayng

    “You cannot concede if you want to get results in the Premier League, or any division, but especially when you are playing in the top division.

    Even with prospect of better attacking players joining us that will remain his core philosophy for this season and perhaps beyond.

    We do press a little higher at home and that means when possession turns over we are often already higher up pitch than we are away and in stronger position to hurt opposition. Away it usually means Joselu who presses with Perez around half way line struggles to catch up with play in box on abreak with usually Atsu there who is beaten for height.

    Will January see changes in strategy? Probably not but hopefully right incomings will give us more time in oppositions last third, better retention of ball and more precise play in tight areas. Hope so anyway.

  • magscar

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:26 PM

    Comment #7

    Sing @4

    I can get my head around why he may favour Joselu ( especially away) but not why Mitro can’t figure on bench even as injury back up. Must be something more than trust it seems – has Mitro spat his dummy out?

  • Geordie-john

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:28 PM

    Comment #8

    I know that Rafa’s young ladies follow and read these posts from time to time so, There are a hell of a lot of fans ( myself included ) would like to know what is the problem with Mitro ? Publically he has stated in the past that he wants to prove himself and fight for his place in the first team, So why not give him a good chance ? Shelvey has been allowed to prove himself after being sucked in by the likes of Deli Ali etc. I honestly think that Mitro needs to be shown how to adjust and channel his aggression into scoring. How about the likes of Mr Shearer sparing a bit of his time for a good cause ? His idol ! If he can’t listen and learn from Alan then he truly is a lost cause and would satisfy all concerned that he was given a good chance to prove or fail. Go on he’s young and strong and well liked by the majority of the toon army

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Oct 31, 2017 at 1:37 PM

    Comment #9

    hibbit…I think you’re right in regard to Mitro…there is definitely something going on!

    …it’s not a healthy situation if Joselu cannot be dropped or Rafa is unwilling to change our setup to address this situation (if that is the situation)


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