Newcastle boss Eddie Howe has saluted “ultimate professional” Fabian Schar after he signed a new two-year contract with the club.
The Magpies announced on Friday morning that the 30-year-old Switzerland international, who has been a key figure in the club’s Premier League revival, had put pen to paper.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of Saturday’s clash with quadruple-chasing Liverpool, head coach Howe said: “He’s got vast experience. I really like him as a player.
“He’s performed very, very well. He had a long spell out of the team and to come back into the team initially was quite difficult for him. But he’s picked up his rhythm and his form.
“I think everyone knows Fab is technically a very, very good footballer. The big thing he’s proved is he can defend very, very effectively within the team structure that we’ve given him.
“I’m delighted with him. He’s been the ultimate professional off the pitch as well, he’s been very driven. He’s been a big part of our leadership within the team as well so he’s a role model for the younger players to look at in terms of how to conduct yourself as well, so I’m delighted for him.”
Only Newcastle’s best can beat Liverpool
Meanwhile, Howe admits his Newcastle side are looking to back up their win at Norwich last weekend with another three points against title-chasing Liverpool.
He added: “We know that nothing but our best tomorrow will be good enough. We have to be perfect defensively but we still have to give them a threat the other way.
“I think we have the players to do that but we need them at their very best levels.
“We had a good result last week and a good performance but we’ve trained well off the back of that.
“We know that with the games we have coming up there can be no dropping of our standards because this league can be ruthless at times.”