Grant Hanley: Newcastle United defender praises squad 'togetherness'

Grant Hanley
Grant Hanley has played 18 games for Newcastle since his move from Blackburn Rovers in the summer of 2016

Newcastle United are fortunate to have togetherness and unity within the squad, says defender Grant Hanley.

The Mapgies have had key absentees through injury this season, such as top scorer Dwight Gayle, striker Aleksandar Mitrovic and midfielder Vurnon Anita.

In spite of this, Rafael Benitez's side have maintained their Premier League promotion bid, topping the Championship with 78 points from 38 games.

"It's a massive strength we've got here," Hanley said.

"It's brilliant that the lads are together."

Hanley, 25, played for the first time since February in Saturday's 0-0 draw at Birmingham City, one of 18 appearances this season.

The Scotland international deputised for fellow defender Ciaran Clark, who has suffered knee ligament damage.

"I've not got as much game time as I'd have liked but I'm not alone as there are a number of lads who are probably feeling the same," Hanley added.

"The lads who have been playing have done really well and that's the way it is.

"Everybody knows they have a part to play, so it's important to be constantly ready and on top of your game so when you're called up you're ready to go."

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