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Pie's the limit for Santon on Tyneside
DAVIDE SANTON has swapped pasta for North-East pies in a bid to become a success on the Premier League stage with Newcastle United.
The Italian defender struggled initially after his £5m switch from Inter Milan 13 months ago but is now starting to show his potential.
The 21-year-old, capped seven times by his country during his time in Serie A, has turned in some promising displays already this season and looked good in Sunday’s 1-0 win over Norwich City.
His understanding with Jonas Gutierrez down the left flank is growing by the game and manager Alan Pardew is confident that he will be a long term success on Tyneside – and the food he eats is helping!
Pardew, weighing up whether to keep him in the team at Manchester United tonight in the Capital One Cup, said: "He is a lovely lad, loves the area and does a great job.
"His language skills have improved. I think he has a North-East girlfriend now cooking him some nice pies so he is a bit happier. He just looks in a good place and I am really pleased with him.
"I think he was a boy last year. He is a man now and is starting to play like a man. His raids down the left hand side are becoming ... as potent as Jonas, from the left back position.
"I think that is his best position because he can go both ways. He still has lots to learn, trust me, to be a top Italian full-back but he is certainly making some inroads.
"If you thought we were going to get an instant replacement for Jose Enrique , we would have had to pay more than £10m. Instead, we got a young player who was going to grow with us and he is starting to grow and be very effective for us. I am so pleased for him.”