Kieran Trippier signed an extension to his Newcastle United contract on Friday, as the England defender compared Eddie Howe's Magpies to Diego Simeone's Atletico Madrid.
The 32-year-old was a LaLiga winner with Simeone's industrious Atletico team before making the switch to Newcastle in January 2022, becoming the first major signing of the club's new Saudi-led ownership era.
He and Newcastle have enjoyed a strong year, fending off relegation worries last season before soaring up the Premier League table this term, sitting third and winning the first leg of their EFL Cup semi-final against Southampton 1-0.
Tripper's new deal means he is adding 12 months to the deal he signed when arriving at St James' Park.
It is a reward for helping Newcastle keep 12 clean sheets in 20 Premier League games this season, conceding a league-low 11 goals so far.
Trippier recognises parallels between the teams coached by Howe and Simeone.
The former Burnley and Tottenham full-back told the club's official website: "With Simeone it was crazy in the way we trained, the way he was obsessed with keeping clean sheets, and I think here it's a similar mindset. We need to stop goals going in. I think we've showed this season how difficult we are to play against."
"There's nowhere I'd rather be."— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) January 27, 2023
Trippier said there was never any doubt he would commit to an extended stay on Tyneside, believing he and the team are only going to keep improving.
"I think I'm playing the best football of my career here at Newcastle," Trippier said. "We're challenging for a cup and a good position in the league, and it's a bright future ahead for Newcastle."
Asked about working with Howe, Trippier said: "I feel like he's brought an extra level out of me this season.
"You only need to look from last season, the position we were in before the takeover happened, how many goals we were conceding, and the progression that we've made in a year and a bit.
"It's massive progress, but we're only halfway through, and we know how relentless the Premier League is, so we need to stay focused because we've got some massive games coming up."
Head coach Howe said Trippier's new deal was "a fitting reward for the season he's had", describing him as "outstanding both on and off the pitch".