Papiss Cisse has now officially left Newcastle United.

The Senegalese striker was missing from training at the end of last week and now the club have confirmed he has joined Shandong Luneng.

Persistent rumours have claimed the forward was heading to China the last couple of years and now it has finally happened.

With one year left on his contract, it looked nailed on that Newcastle would try and shift him, especially with Dwight Gayle arriving.

A stunning first three months of a goal a game for Newcastle, most of them stunning, has been followed by an indifferent four seasons of variable form and regular injuries.

Fans now wait to see what will happen with a number of other players also now in the final year of their United deals, the most prominent being Tim Krul, Cheick Tiote and Vurnon Anita.

Official Newcastle United Statement:

Papiss Cisse has left Newcastle United to join Shandong Luneng.

The 31-year-old striker has signed for the Chinese Super League club for an undisclosed fee, and leaves Tyneside after four-and-a-half years.

Cisse joined the Magpies in January 2012 from SC Freiburg and scored 44 goals in 131 appearances for the Club.

Everyone at St. James’ Park wishes Papiss all the best for the next stage of his career.’