Newcastle swoop for Santon

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ON A day when all the talk in the North-East is of goalscorers, Newcastle have confirmed the signing of Italian full-back Davide Santon from Inter Milan.

The 6ft 2in defender, who has been given the No.3 shirt, is seen as a direct replacement for departed Spaniard Jose Enrique, who joined Liverpool earlier this month.

Santon first burst onto the scene aged just 18, making his debut in the Coppa-Italia quarter-final victory over Roma – who were also apparently interested in the Italian. A month later, he was tasked with man-marking Cristiano Ronaldo in a Champions League tie, a performance which drew high praise from both Ronaldo and coach Jose Mourinho. The same year, he also made his full International debut against Northern Ireland.

Despite being only 20-years-old, Santon already has an impressive list of honours, including two Serie A titles, and a Champions League Winners medal.

However, injuries kept him out for most of the 2009-10 season, and the following year he was shipped out on loan to Cesena on the final day of the January transfer window – playing 11 times and helping the team finish 15th in the league.

Newcastle will now be hoping that the move can get the youngster’s career back on track – with first team football in front of 50,000 clearly a major pull in the deal which many have seen as a huge coup for the Magpies.