NEWCASTLE last night completed their much-anticipated first summer signing, landing QPR striker Loic Remy on a season-long loan.
And the Frenchman insists that he is “honoured” to have signed for the Magpies, despite opting to join QPR ahead of Newcastle when he left Marseille back in January.
The Tynesiders are understood to have agreed to pay £2million to seal the loan deal.
“I’m very happy to be a Newcastle player,” said 26-year-old Remy, who netted six times in 14 matches for QPR, but was unable to keep them in the Premier League.
“It will be a huge honour to play for such a big club.
“I was very flattered by the club’s interest in me back in January, and also very happy that they showed interest in me again this summer.
“The Premier League is the best league in the world, and that’s where I want to play. I am very motivated this year to get into the World Cup squad for my country.
“I know in order to do that I need to have a big season and a successful campaign with Newcastle United.
“I am focused on helping the team achieve success this season and scoring as many goals as I can.”
Newcastle’s controversial director of football, Joe Kinnear, was involved in the negotiations.
Kinnear said: “I’m delighted to have secured Loic for the season. Now we have him I’m sure he’ll be a huge success for us.
The completion of the deal has come as a relief to manager Alan Pardew, who was left short of options up front in January after Demba Ba left for Chelsea.
Pardew said: “Loic is a great player, and I’m delighted that Joe has got him on board for us.
“He’ll be a great addition to the squad, he gives us strength and pace up front and I’m sure he’ll bring plenty of goals.
Meanwhile, Pardew has taken a 20-man squad to Scotland for tonight’s Ibrox friendly against Rangers.
“It’ll be a strong team,” he said.
“There’s a great history between the two clubs, and I’m sure our fans will enjoy going to Ibrox. It’ll be a good game, and we hope to get a positive result.”
Pardew’s side wrap up their pre-season programme against Braga at St James’s Park on Saturday, and the Magpies’ manager is concerned about the potential for injury given the intensive pre-season he’s implemented.
“The guys are in great condition,” Pardew said. “But it’s a dangerous week. Their levels have been very high, and if we are going to get an injury, it might be this week.
“We have to be on guard against Rangers and Braga.”
Striker Papiss Cisse belied his lack of match pratice on his seasonal debut at St Mirren last week.
“We were a bit surprised with Papiss,” said Pardew. “We did what we could with him in the background, but it wasn’t easy for him. He’s coped very well.”