Three interesting facts about Xisco…
He is still only 31.
Newcastle are still the only club to ever pay a transfer fee for him.
He cost NUFC £6m ten years ago, more money than Mike Ashley allowed Rafa Benitez to spend on a striker last summer (Joselu – £5m).
However, maybe the most astonishing fact is that currently, Xisco can proudly declare that he is currently ‘top scorer’.
It has taken him a long time and it is only the second tier in Spain but Xisco has seven goals in all competitions for Osasuna, making him their top scorer this season.
Only one club in the top 10 of the Spanish second division has scored less goals than Osasuna but nevertheless, the former Newcastle striker has helped his club into sixth place and a chance of the play-offs, which could lead to a return to La Liga for Xisco.
It was one of the most disgraceful episodes in Newcastle’s history when Mike Ashley and his minions lied to Kevin Keegan, Keegan taking the manager’s job on the understanding he would have control of transfers.
The reality all along though was that Ashley had told Dennis Wise he had control and it was proved in court that they had lied to Kevin Keegan when he filed for constructive dismissal.
Players were bought and sold behind his back and the final straw was when Xisco was signed on 31 August 2008.
To cap it all, he was useless, and one of the dodgiest looking transfers ever seen, the player having done nothing to suggest he was worth the £6m Newcastle paid.
He ended up scoring one league goal for Newcastle and started only three league matches.
The rest of his career has confirmed how suspect that transfer fee was, no other club has ever paid money for him, a career full of loans and free transfers.
Apart from a few goals in Thailand and lower divisions elsewhere, Xisco has only scored six top flight goals since scoring his one goal for Newcastle in a 2-1 defeat by Hull.
Amazingly, Xisco is at least a step up on another useless £6m striker Newcastle bought and who played for Osasuna last season, as the side were relegated from La Liga last season, Riviere scored not a single league goal all season in his final year on loan from Newcastle.
Anybody who doubts what Mike Ashley is all about, only needs to remind themselves of two things (though the list is endless), Dennis Wise and Xisco.