Mikel Merino is shining in Newcastle's midfield away from Dortmund uncertainty

Mikel Merino of Newcastle United during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Newcastle United at Liberty Stadium on September 10, 2017 in Swansea, Wales.

Having been selected in a defensive role for Dortmund, Mikel Merino must be relieved to be given the chance to excel further forward at Newcastle.

Newcastle United player Mikel Merino in action  during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on August 13, 2017 in Newcastle upon Tyne,...

Mikel Merino's summer switch to Newcastle United has looked like a smart one from day one - and the events of the last week have only served to prove that.

Former club Borussia Dortmund may be top of the Bundesliga but, with a defensive injury crisis, they were beaten at Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday night.

Less than 24 hours later, Merino was announced as Newcastle's player of the month for August, an award he will pick up ahead of Saturday's game against Stoke City.

Renato Sanches of Swansea City and Mikel Merino of Newcastle United during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Newcastle United at Liberty Stadium on September 10, 2017 in...

And it is an honour Merino fully deserves, having shown the immense talent he possesses after being given a run in his favoured midfield role.

For at Dortmund, the Spanish star started just two league games - in the centre of defence on both occasions - as he struggled to gain the trust of then coach Thomas Tuchel.

Hertha's Tunisian forward Sami Allagui (L), Hertha's Swiss midfielder Valentin Stocker (R) and Dortmund's Spanish midfielder Mikel Merino vie for the ball during the German first division...

Peter Bosz, Tuchel's replacement, may well have given Merino's more opportunities in midfield this term, but he surely would not have thrived as he has done and, with injuries to Marc Bartra and Marcel Schmelzer, still would have been in line for a defensive call-up.

Newcastle has so far proven the perfect setting for Merino to continue his development, even if it lacks the glamour of a European night at Wembley.

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch