Newcastle United have confirmed the departure of French winger Allan Saint-Maximin, who has completed his move to Saudi Arabian side Al Ahli.
Saint-Maximin spent four years at St James’ Park, racking up 124 appearances in all competitions and chiming in with 13 goals and 21 assists for good measure.
He is now set for a new chapter in the Middle East with Al Ahli, becoming their fourth blockbuster addition after the signings of Edouard Mendy, Roberto Firmino and Riyad Mahrez.
“Four years ago, I wore the Newcastle jersey for the first time. At that moment, I hadn’t realised that not only was I about to become a Newcastle player, but I was also about to become a Geordie,” Saint-Maximin wrote to fans on Twitter.
“You might think ‘nice goodbye message’ but the sentiment runs deeper than any words I could say, from the very first months that I met the people of this city, I truly understood them and embraced their unwavering passion, which is why it was so important for me to give my all and if this meant to play injured or even not making statistics, I didn’t give a s**t as long as it would help my team.
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“Believe me, I fell for Newcastle, I had great opportunities to leave during dark days, but that was too late I was already in love, I wanted, I needed, I had to stay for helping my team to save the club from Premier League relegation because it meant the world for me.
“Of course during those dark days some may have had their doubts, but I always believed in this club and look where we are today, it’s just so beautiful. I’m leaving Newcastle as it should always have been and that’s my greatest trophy because I was a part of it.
“A deep thank you to ALL of you, my teammates, the loyal fans, the staff, the Club, etc. I’ve seen all your messages, thank you and even though this chapter has ended, the story never stops. Newcastle is home now, I’ll continue to be your biggest supporter, I’ll watch every game and as long as the club keeps winning I’ll be the happiest man in the world… and for sure you will see me again.
“I love you, I love you sincerely, I love you like a Geordie brother. Once a Geordie, always a Geordie.”
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