Breaking: Newcastle make first Premier League signing – Christian Atsu confirmed
Newcastle complete Christian Atsu signing!
Official Newcastle United statement:
‘Newcastle United can confirm the permanent signing of Christian Atsu from Chelsea.
The 25-year-old Ghana international spent last season on loan at St. James’ Park, making 32 league appearances and scoring five goals as Rafa Benítez’s side lifted the Sky Bet Championship title.
The Magpies have now exercised an option to sign him for an undisclosed fee and the winger has signed a four-year deal.
The transfer is subject to Atsu successfully reapplying for a work permit.
Manager Benítez said: “We are happy to sign a good player.
“He’s shown us that he’s a good professional and someone who is very keen to learn and improve.
“Christian has been a key part of our promotion campaign and he wants to help us to build something for the future.”
Eight days ago news first broke that the deal had been agreed and this is what we reported at the time:
The Mag 16 May 2017:
Sky Sports are now reporting that the move for Christian Atsu has been agreed.
They say that a four year contract has been agreed after Newcastle activated the release clause.
A fee of £6.2m will be paid to Chelsea according to the broadcaster.
Monday had brought news that the club were allegedly in talks with the winger on personal terms and then earlier today, the Chronicle reported that Rafa Benitez had travelled to Tyneside and gave the go ahead to the transfer.
The winger has just spent a year on loan at St James Park and fans were split on whether the deal should be made permanent.
A fee of around £6m or so looks about right for a player who has blown hot and cold this past season but has undoubtedly shown glimpses of real quality in that time.
The move would formally go through when the transfer window opens once again in July..
Christian Atsu joined Chelsea for £3.5m four years ago from Porto and is just one of numerous players recruited by Chelsea who hasn’t played a single game for them.
He clearly is never going to get a chance for Conte’s Premier League winning side and with now just one year remaining of his five season deal, he looks definitely to be on his way, whether that is Newcastle or elsewhere.
St James Park has been his fifth loan destination since joining the blues and if he is ever going to get his career going properly, Christian Atsu needs a place he can call home.
He has scored five goals and grabbed three assists in the Championship for Newcastle.
Rafa Benitez only gave him 15 starts in the Championship, six in 2016 and nine after the turn of the year, whilst he has also came off the bench 17 times in the league.
He did have some injury problems but in 18 months at Premier League Everton and Bournemouth on loan, Christian Atsu only started one game in the top tier.
He turns 26 in January and has only made 78 league starts in his entire career, making more first elevens for Ghana than any club he has been at so far.
Christian Atsu did end the season with a few more starts, at least in part down to Matt Ritchie’s injury/suspension and did pull his finger out as the campaign drew to a close. The final three matches seeing goals against Preston and Cardiff, as well as a very good performance against Barnsley on the final day.
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