By Tom Blackburn
Newcastle midfielder Mohamed Diame is convinced the club will return to the Premier League – and that is why he signed.
Diame says he spoke to fellow Senegalese pair Charles NZogbia and Habib Beye among others before joining, and that it wasn’t a difficult decision to quit Hull and drop down from the top flight..
“Everybody knows Newcastle. I know the issues here as well and I know Senegalese players who have been here,” he told the Chronicle.
“We all know the stories about Alan Shearer and what he did at the club. I have played with players who have been here too.
“Charles N’Zogbia told me things and Habib Beye too. They have been here at this massive club. When I spoke to a few people before making my decision they said it was a massive club even though they aren’t in the Championship.
“I know that we will back to the Premier League and they said just go there.”
The attacking midfielder joined the north-east giants from Hull after they activated a £4.5million release clause in Diame’s contract earlier this summer.
Diame chose to drop down a division from the Premier League even though Hull tried to keep him by offering an improved contract.
Newcastle became the fourth English club for the 29-year-old, who has also played for Wigan, West Ham and Hull over the last seven years, following his arrival from Rayo Vallecano in Spain.
He scored the winning goal as Hull were promoted via the play-offs last season, and scored an impressive 14 goals in 57 matches from midfield for the club.
Diame will miss Wednesday nights match against Reading with an ankle injury, and says he isn’t there to replace Moussa Sissoko who has been linked with a £35million move away from the club.
“I am not here to replace anybody – I am here to give my best and get the club back to the Premier League. I want to get fit and show what I am like when I am flying on the pitch.
“My main aim is to make the fans happy but to do that I need to be fit. If I am fit, like I say, I’ll be flying and nobody will stop me if I do that.”
In other Newcastle news, here is their expected 4-2-3-1 v Reading and a senior star returns to line-up.