Florian Thauvin has been questioned by journalists for the first time since he arrived at St James Park.
The new signing trained on Friday with his new teammates and when asked if he was fit to play, Thauvin said ‘I’m there’ if Steve McClaren needs him.
The winger having completed a full pre season with Marseille, playing in all the friendlies, as well as starting the opening two Ligue 1 matches.
The new signing doesn’t see any problem dealing with the perceived physicality of the Premier League and says that his price tag is immaterial as football is simply his ‘passion’.
He was also very polite when a journalist asked how he fancied his chances of breaking into the team, considering there were already a lot of ‘very good attacking midfielders already at the club’….
Florian Thauvin fielding questions when he met the press after training on Friday:
“I’m actually very happy to be here at Newcastle and very surprised, in a very good way, to see such a well organised club.
“My first training session with the team today (Friday) went really well.
“When I arrived we had a long chat, the manager and I. He asked me to be an important player for the team, he wants me to get goals and supply goals, plus he also wants me to fulfil my defensive duties as well.”
“It is not a problem for me, I am a footballer and it is my passion, it is my job and it is my dream to be here playing in the Premier League.”
‘Remy Cabella struggled with physical side – can you adapt?’
“Premier League is well known for being a very physical league, it is very different to France, but it is not something that concerns me.
“Maybe I will have to take a little time to get used to it but once I am settled I will be fine.”
‘Will it be difficult to break into the team as there are a lot of very good attacking midfielders at Newcastle?’
“Of course, it will be difficult. Like you said, there is a lot of talent already in the team, so the onus is on me to make sure I really step up to get a place in the team.”
‘Laurent Robert, David Ginola, Hatem Ben Arfa…are you hoping to add your name?’
“Of course, it would be an honour for me to be one of the best players at this football club.”
‘Nearly came to Premier League before?’
“Two or three seasons ago, Arsene Wenger perhaps made an approach with Arsenal, but I think they and Newcastle are the only two.”
“It is always a big decision, especially when you have to leave your country, but it is a big challenge that I am looking forward to.
“I really can’t wait to get out there on the turf at St James Park, at this first home game. I have been told it is a magnificent atmosphere when it is full, very similar to Marseille.”
‘Ready to play?’
“I did pre season at Marseille, I played in all the friendly games, I started the season there, so if the coach needs me – I’m there.”
‘When you look at the players you are training alongside, what do you think Newcastle should be aiming for?’
“I hope we finish as high as possible. I am not going to lie to you today, it is my first time playing in the Premier League, it is my first time really getting to know my team – so I don’t know where we are going to finish.”