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Lewin Nyatanga contract extension is statement of intent, says Barnsley head coach Lee Johnson

8 June 2015

Lee Johnson believes the re-signing of defender Lewin Nyatanga is a significant boost for his side, after the defender penned a new two-year deal.

Nyatanga made 51 appearances for the Tykes last term, scoring five goals, and he was named the Players' Player of the Year at the club's end-of-season awards ceremony.

And Reds' head coach Johnson was beaming to secure his services at Oakwell for another two years.

“I think it's massive," Johnson told barnsleyfc.co.uk. "For Lewin to want to be a part of it here is great.

“Some players would want a fresh challenge but he's committed himself and we're delighted because he had an excellent back-end to the season.

“He's excellent in the dressing room. It's a big statement to keep him because there was other interest in him and why wouldn't there be?

"To find a player at 6ft 2”, left-footed and an international with 250 Championship games under his belt is phenomenal.

“That just shows our intent to push on next year. Even though he was already with us, in the modern day there's still that loyalty there and that's nice to know."

Nyatanga's contract extension was coupled with the news that Barnsley had signed Scottish Cup winner Marley Watkins from Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

The 24-year-old, who is capable of playing on the wing or up front, scored nine goals and notched 16 assists for Inverness last term, and is excited to be moving to Oakwell.

“I'm delighted," Watkins, who has previously played in England for Cheltenham Town, Bath City and Hereford United, said.

"I had a good, positive meeting with Lee Johnson and I was really impressed with what he had to say and where he wants to go. I'm excited to be a part of it."

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