Tuesday 17 July 2018

I needed no convincing to join Rafa revolution, says Joselu

Newcastle new boy Joselu during the open day at St James' Park
Newcastle new boy Joselu during the open day at St James' Park

Newcastle new boy Joselu is confident he can kick-start his Premier League career on Tyneside after receiving an offer he could not refuse from Rafael Benitez.

The 27-year-old Spaniard completed a £5million switch to St James' Park on Wednesday, in the process ending a difficult two-year stay at Stoke which saw him spend the second 12 months on loan at Deportivo la Coruna.

He scored only four goals in 27 appearances for the Potteries club, but has faith in his ability to significantly better that in a black and white shirt.

Joselu said: "I am here because I want to play in the Premier League. For me, it's the best league in the world. I want to play, enjoy and score a lot of goals at St James' Park in a Newcastle shirt.

"For me, it's a pleasure to be again in the Premier League. Newcastle is a big club and its an honour for me to play at this club in this amazing city.

"It's not about why I moved from Stoke to here. When Rafa called me, I didn't have to think any more about it, and now I am here and I want to enjoy it.

"Newcastle have a very good team and very good players as well. We will try to do our best home and away. We will try to win all the games to stay again in the Premier League."

Joselu trained with his new team-mates in front of around 5,000 fans on St James' Park on Thursday as the club staged an open day.

The event came four days after the Magpies opened their first season back in the Premier League with an eventful 2-0 home defeat by Tottenham which saw defenders Florian Lejeune and Paul Dummett limp off before the break and Jonjo Shelvey sent off shortly after it.

It may not have been the result skipper Jamaal Lascelles and his colleagues craved, but he insists last season's Sky Best Championship title winners can make an impact in the top flight.

Lascelles said: "We are here to compete. It will be tough - it's the best league in the world, some great players, great teams - but we did well in the Championship and now we need to take that through to the Premier League.

"It's football, anything can happen. We have got the right attitude, the right mentality - we are ambitious and we have got a team full of winners, as everyone saw last season.

"We would go a goal down, but we would come back and win the game. It just goes to show what we're about.

"We will keep fighting to the final whistle and that sort of character from us will definitely help us."

Press Association

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