Newcastle United loanee Mikel Merino feels "blessed to play at St James' Park"

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Newcastle United loanee Mikel Merino says that he feels "blessed to play at St James' Park" after quickly becoming a fan favourite on Tyneside.

Mikel Merino has hailed the Newcastle United fanbase, admitting that he feels "blessed" to be playing at St James' Park with such a passionate crowd.

The Spain Under-21 international joined the Magpies on loan from Borussia Dortmund in the summer and has quickly become a fan favourite on Tyneside.

A number of Toon fans have reportedly joked that Merino is too good to play for them, compliments which have been taken well by the 21-year-old.

"Little by little I am understanding everything, how English people play football, I am happy here and I think this is going to be a good year," he told Sky Sports News.

"I am so honoured about the compliments the (Newcastle fans) are saying to me. I am really happy here and blessed to play at St James' Park with this crowd.

"Always when you go to the stadium, to see all the crowd shouting and screaming is crazy. And I am really happy that they said that about me and that means I am working hard and doing the right things and I am really happy."

Merino played a key role in helping his country reach the final of last summer's U21 European Championships in Poland.

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