Newcastle United have confirmed that Mikel Merino has now completed a move to Real Sociedad, with the 22-year-old returning to Spain and signing a five-year deal after the La Liga side activated his £10m release clause.
The Spaniard only signed a permanent deal at St James’ Park last October – having impressed following his initial loan move from Borussia Dortmund – however his time on Tyneside quickly went down hill from there.
Injuries and a subsequent loss of form meant he was kept out of the side by Mo Diame and Jonjo Shelvey for the majority of 2018, and it seems like he’s been quite unsettled ever since – with a return to Spain seeming to have been on the cards for months now.
Here’s the club’s official statement on the Spaniard now his alleged £10m move to Real Sociedad has been confirmed:
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) July 12, 2018
Mikel Merino has completed a permanent move to La Liga side Real Socieded.
The 22-year-old leaves St. James’ Park for an undisclosed fee having made 24 Premier League appearances for the Magpies, scoring once in a 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.
Merino initially joined Newcastle United on loan from Borussia Dortmund last summer before the option of a permanent transfer was exercised in October 2017.
The midfielder’s new club, which is based in San Sebastián – just over 50 miles from his hometown of Pamplona, finished 12th in the Spanish top flight last season.
Everyone at Newcastle United wishes the player the best for the future.
It’s a shame to see such a talented young player leave so soon, but it’s quite clear that his heart was no longer in it – meaning it’s perhaps a good move for all parties that he’s now left the club.
The alleged £10m release clause is frustrating – being a very low fee for a player of his age and potential – however it seems there was little we could do on that front, with the Chronicle admitting this morning that he wouldn’t have signed in the first place if we hadn’t agreed to it.
Good luck Mikel – let’s hope he can finally settle following a return to his homeland.
— Real Sociedad (@RealSociedadEN) July 12, 2018