Mike Williamson is back in the north east, revealed as Gateshead’s latest signing on Friday morning.

He has signed a one year deal and gives a young Heed squad some valuable experience.

Williamson turns 35 in November and since leaving Newcastle in 2016 has played for Wolves and Oxford.

In his six years at St James Park, ‘honest trier’ could have been written permanently on the back of his shirt.

Gateshead Manager and former Newcastle star Steve Watson:

“I explained to him how we’ve had our backs to the wall all summer, how we’ve built a young hungry squad and Mike bought into that straight away.

“He was committed to living in Newcastle with his family long before we spoke, he’s got a lot of ties up here and it works out well for both parties.

“I know Mike has had offers from elsewhere over the summer and he’s certainly not here for any other reason, he wants to play for the football club.

“He believes in the process and what we’re trying to do, the only reason it hasn’t been done earlier was to get him playing competitive football as he hasn’t for a while.

“He’s been patient, he hasn’t demanded to sign and I like the way he’s gone about things and I think he’ll enjoy it here.”

Mike Williamson:

 “I feel like I haven’t left, it has only been a couple of years.

“I was speaking to my wife on the way up and said it feels like coming home again, a nice feeling.

“My time at Newcastle was special, we spent six years here and we have roots here, the best spell of my career.

“The area, the fans, everything is fantastic and I had a good relationship with them. Everything fits with this move.

“I made the decision to move back based on family and met Steve Watson one afternoon, he presented exactly what the task was.

“He has passion and a fantastic career behind him and he understands what we have to do here and how difficult the task is.

“Part of being an experienced player is helping to develop players and that is where my main interest is. Making sure they are living right and playing right, making sure they are happy away from the pitch will produce results on it.

“It is the youngest group in the league and the manager has given me the freedom to have a big impact on and off the pitch.

“We have started well this season and it’s a young, hungry squad and they have shown what they are capable of doing.

“It is a long season ahead but we are an honest group and we are ready for the challenge”