Signing Confirmed: CIARAN CLARK

Another day, another new face at St James Park.

Today’s addition is probably not one that most will get over excited about and we doubt he will make the back page of any National papers, but could prove a shrewd signing for Rafa Benitez.

Ciaran Clark is the man in question, having joined from fellow Championship promotion hopefuls Aston Villa for a fee of £5m, with Newcastle once more making the most of a contractual ‘buy out’ clause.

Clark, now 26, had been at Villa man and boy making 134 league appearances, mostly at centre back, but who could play as a makeshift fullback at a push.

Having represented his country, England, at U17, 18, 19 and 20’s he did what so many do who think they will never quite make the full England squad and find an Irish Grandmother. He now has 19 Republic of Ireland caps to his name and has scored twice for them during those appearance.

What had been in the way of Ciaran turning into a first choice centre back at the highest level thus far in his career has been his poor passing game and indiscipline. In the case of the latter of these two you need look no further than the 39 yellow and 2 red cards received in his 134 Premier League games. That’s almost of Tiote proportions.

But with Taylor and Coloccini both having departed the club (free agent Taylor being confirmed as Portland Timbers player yesterday bless him) Ciaran will no doubt be a welcome addition to the defensive ranks in what is likely to be a long and arduous season of hopefully more than 50 games.

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