The full-back, who joined for an estimated £5 million on Tuesday, feels the Real Madrid coach taught him to give his all on the pitch, and he wants to grow as a player in England
The 20-year-old joined the St James’ Park club on Tuesday for a reported £5 million, signing a five-year-deal, having fallen out of favour at San Siro.
The full-back had only positives things to say about the current Real Madrid manager and revealed his new boss Alan Pardew has impressed him a lot already.
He told the Evening Chronicle: “I must say a big thank you to Mr Jose Mourinho. He has been really important for me.
“He has taught me to give 100 per cent out on the pitch and other important things. He has been really important to my career. I can only thank him.
“Alan Pardew has been fantastic with me. I was really impressed with him when I met him for the first time.
“I really like him because he wants to speak to players as men. Now I want to show him exactly what I can do on the pitch. It is a big desire for me to do well at this club.”
The young defender, who can play at right or left-back, came through the ranks at Inter but a lack of first-team football meant he was open to a move.
He added: “When Newcastle asked me to move here I said 'yes' straight away. The proposal of Newcastle and the timing was perfect.
“I have signed for five years for that very reason – I want to grow up with this team. The team can grow together and win things and I hope we can do that often.
“We need time and I know that. I am happy to be here and I hope to win a trophy.”
The Italian, who has seven caps for his country, compared Newcastle to Milan and revealed he is loving the attention from the Toon fans.
“It is like Milan I think. Everybody loves their football," he said.
“When the supporters see me I am happy because they like me already. It is a compliment to be asked for a photograph or give them a signature. It is no problem.”