- Premier League
Newcastle finally complete Debuchy deal
Newcastle have completed the signing of France international full-back Mathieu Debuchy from Lille.
The 27-year-old, who is predominately a right-back but can also play in midfield, has signed a five-and-a-half year deal to join the Magpies, following a long pursuit by manager Alan Pardew.
The Premier League side did not reveal the transfer fee involved, although it is believed to be in the region of £5 million.
"It is great to become a Newcastle United player," Debuchy said. "After many great years at Lille I felt I was ready for a new challenge, and cannot wait to play for such a big club in the best league in the world.
"I hope I can bring something fresh to the team and help us get up to the highest possible position in the Premier League this season.
"I will give everything for this club."
Debuchy, who will wear the No. 26 shirt, is set to become Newcastle's first-choice right-back, as Pardew strengthens his squad ahead of the impending departure of leading scorer Demba Ba. The Toon boss was delighted to finally get his man, having been strongly linked with Debuchy for more than six months.
"We are absolutely delighted to have finally secured the signature of Mathieu," Pardew said. "It's no secret we've been trailing him for some time now and to have reached this point fills me with great excitement and anticipation in respect of what he will be able to offer the team.
"At the same time it's a huge relief to actually have him with us now.
"He is an established top international player and it is a real coup for this club that we now have him at St. James' Park.
"Mathieu will add real quality to our team, in terms of his ability, character and experience and I am sure he will quickly become a firm favourite among our fans too."
Debuchy, who is close friends with midfielder Yohan Cabaye, played over 230 times for Lille during his time with the Ligue 1 side. He has 12 caps for France.