Newcastle United have completed the signing of attacking midfielder Giorginio Wijnaldum from Dutch Eredevisie side PSV Eindhoven on a five-year deal.
The Tyne side outfit have not revealed the cost of the transfer, which has been reportedly quoted at €20m (£14m)- the third highest fee ever payed by the club since they signed Michael Owen and Alan Shearer, both of whom went on to have successful careers at St. James’ Park. The 24-year-old becomes Steve McClaren’s first signing as manager.
“I felt the time was right for me to move and the Club have shown they really want me, so I’m very happy to be here,” said Wijnaldum.
“I know the Club has a great stadium with great fans. I want to play here as soon as possible – I want to feel the atmosphere and hear the crowd. I cannot wait to get started.”
McClaren added: “This signing is a real statement for the Club. It is a big transfer for a very good player and I am delighted to have Gini here at the Club.
“He has lots of energy and a great tempo to his game. He is very skillful but is also capable of playing box-to-box, and – importantly – he can score goals.
“He is at the right age and the right fit for Newcastle. He is a leader as well and you will see that. He is someone who always wants the ball, can deal with it, and we need that kind of character in the team.”
Wijnaldumm spent seven seasons with childhood club Sparta Rotterdam before joining Feyenoord, where he added a further five seasons, making 134 appearances.
He joined PSV in June 2011 and scored 14 goals in 33 league appearances last season, leading the coach Philipp Cocu side to success in the Dutch championship. He was also crowned Dutch Footballer of the Year 2014/15.
He has been capped 19 times at full international level and scored in the third-place play-off win against Brazil at the 2014 World Cup.