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Spanish manager Rafa Benitez has told Christian Atsu he still remains a key part of his Newcastle plans.
The Ghanaian international has been over-looked since the arrival of Miguel Almiron from Atlanta United in the January transfer window.
The Paraguay international who signed for a club-record £20 million ($26m) has been an instant hit at the St. James Park.
Atsu who was a key player for the Magpies in the first half of the season has since had to settle for a bench role.
But Benitez insists he still values the Ghanaian winger: “You talk about (Salomon) Rondon, (Ayoze) Perez and Almiron and they play well together but I want to be fair with Christian Atsu because he was doing well. Had he not been playing well, that is different.
“Maybe he (Almiron) has more pace going forward causing more problems for defenders and that is beneficial for Rondon and Ayoze.
“Miguel is someone likes to stay at home, come here, train. Nice lad, not too worried about what is going on around him. Concentrating on what he is doing here."
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