‘When a club like Newcastle comes calling…’, says £12m Ritchie

Date published: Friday 1st July 2016 1:23

Matt Ritchie: Heading north

Matt Ritchie: Heading north

Newcastle have completed a Championship-record £12million signing of midfielder Matt Ritchie from Bournemouth.

The 26-year-old Scotland wideman has agreed a five-year deal at St. James’ Park for an undisclosed fee and becomes Rafa Benitez’s third summer signing following the arrival of goalkeeper Matz Sels and striker Dwight Gayle.

“It’s an unbelievable feeling to come to a football club like this,” said Ritchie.

“I loved it at Bournemouth – I had a fantastic time there and it had a huge impact on my career. But when a club like Newcastle comes calling, I couldn’t pass up this opportunity.

“It’s fantastic to be here and I’m really looking forward to the challenge of getting the Club back in the Premier League.”

Rafa Benitez added on the club’s website: “We have been following some wingers for a while and Matt was one of the best prospects for this team.

“He has great ability and pace, and as soon as we knew that Andros Townsend could be leaving, our priority was to finalise this deal.

“We have signed an exciting winger who has experience in the Championship but has also proved that he can step up to the top level. I am delighted that he is now part of our squad.”

Ritchie spent three-and-a-half years at Bournemouth, making 142 appearances, scoring 31 goals and recording 29 assists.

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