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Haidara Relishing Left-Back Battle

NUFC Logo Newcastle United FC

Massadio Haidara is looking forward to challenging Davide Santon for the Newcastle left-back spot next season

By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter

Flying full-back Massadio Haidara believes he and Davide Santon will bring out the very best in each other as they battle for a place on the left-hand side of the Newcastle United defence next season.

Italian ace Santon was one of the Magpies' star performers last term, earning a recall to the full Italy squad on the back of his displays in black and white, while Haidara showed huge promise during his eight appearances either side of the injury he suffered against Wigan in March.

Both are fighting for the same left-back position but that doesn't frighten 20-year-old Haidara, who arrived at St. James' Park from Nancy in January. Quite the opposite, in fact. 

"Competition amongst players can only bring the best out in you, and that then has a knock-on effect to bring the best out in the team as well," the Frenchman told nufc.co.uk.

"When you've got someone who's just as good in your position then it is healthy. It makes you never give up - you give 100 per cent every single time you are on the pitch or the training pitch.

"And if everyone is giving 100 per cent then it can only benefit the team."

As well as Santon, Northern Ireland international Shane Ferguson and Wales under-21 prospect Paul Dummett provide left-back options for Alan Pardew and Haidara added: "Davide and me get on really well off the pitch. On the pitch, the best man is going to play at the end of the day."

Click here to buy a Newcastle United shirt with Haidara's name and number on the back