Antonio Barreca has had a dig at Newcastle United and his lack of game time under Rafa Benitez – before quickly changing the caption.
Barreca, 24, joined Newcastle in the January transfer window on a loan-to-buy deal from AS Monaco. He was eyed as the man to finally solve the Toon’s left-back woes. Gianluca Di Marzio claims the permanent clause is £8million.
However, there were doubts. Newcastle had tried to sign Jordan Lukaku before Barreca, but the Belgian failed a medical. It instantly made Barreca second choice. He posted “Have you forgotten?”, before changing it.
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He had only played nine times in a struggling Monaco side managed by Thierry Henry in the first half of the campaign. He has played just four minutes of football for Newcastle, failing to make the squad since.
Barreca amended the post on Wednesday evening, sending a reminder to Benitez that he is still available for selection and is training hard to be ready when given a chance.
Matt Ritchie has been starring on the left side of defence as a surprise solution to the gap. Paul Dummett is now back after a hamstring injury, and impressed with the captain’s armband against Arsenal.
It leaves little chance for Barreca, but fans would have been hoping for so much more than just four minutes of game time when he joined the club in Newcastle.
Benitez is renowned for signing players as a tool to improve the competition. Perhaps this is what Barreca has been used for, with Ritchie and Barreca impressing since his arrival.