Mikel Merino is away on international duty with Spain.

The Newcastle midfielder having joined up with the Spanish Under 21s for two matches.

They are at home to Estonia on Tuesday 27 March but last night saw them travel to Northern Ireland.

A very entertaining match saw eight goals scored in total, with Spain taking the lead three times, only for the hosts to equalise three times.

Only in the closing stages did the quality of the visitors allow them to pull away, scoring two late goals to give the Spanish Under 21s a 5-3 victory.

Mikel Merino played the full 90 minutes and was involved throughout, at both ends of the pitch.

His first significant contribution coming on the half hour mark when with Spain leading 1-0, the Newcastle midfielder produced a ridiculous sliding tackle in the box. Merino giving away a penalty which was converted, as well as picking up a yellow card.

A minute before half-time though, Mikel Merino showed his true quality.

Picking up possession on the halfway line, he produced a superb assist, a perfect 40 yard pass (watch below) putting in Mikel Oyarzabal to make it 2-1.

The Newcastle man was also involved in the build-up to the goal that made it 4-3 to Spain, threading a good pass through the Irish midfield.

Match highlights below show all the goals as well as Mikel Merino moments, for the penalty incident go to 0.30 and for Merino’s excellent assist it is 1.40.

  • Rich Lawson

    Thanks Graham (auto post),different team and opposition,good signing,just needs to keep doing it here.

    • Peter Robson

      He´s still young and finding his feet in English football, I think when Rafa is finished with him he´ll be a great player !!

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    He needs time on the pitch to reach peak fitness for the run in, that pass was straight out of Jonjo`s book

  • Peaky Magpie

    Providing he’s still here I think we’ll hopefully start and see the best of Merino next season….remember Henry struggled in his first year at Arsenal.

  • gallowgate26

    I think we have the bet manager possible for players like Merino and Perez. Just love Spain me, I try to go at least once a year if I can.

    • Scott Robinson

      Yeah, but you can watch ‘Benidorm’ on the telly instead.

  • thewildchimp

    I really don’t understand why he isn’t playing as 10 for us instead of Perez! Confidence? The trio of Shelvey, Diame and Merino would be massive. The ability to tackle, then pass short and long to Ritchie/Murphy, Kenedy and Gayle.

    • Clarko

      You know he played as a centre back right?