Korea Republic captain Ki Sung-yueng joins Newcastle

Gabriel Tan Gabriel Tan

Korea Republic captain Ki Sung-yueng has prolonged his stay in the Premier League after joining Newcastle on a free transfer.

Apart from one year on loan at Newcastle’s bitter rivals Sunderland, Ki spent the last six seasons at Swansea, whose time in English football’s top flight recently came to an end following their relegation to the Championship.

In the immediate aftermath of that, Ki parted ways with the Swans but it has not taken him long to be snapped up by another Premier League outfit as he put pen to paper to a two-year deal in a move announced on Saturday.

“I’m so pleased I can join the club,” said the 29-year-old, on Newcastle’s official website.

“I was always pleasantly surprised when I came to St. James Park to play against Newcastle – there is a great atmosphere and the passion from the fans is a great support to the players.

“Everyone knows how big this club is so I’m really looking forward to playing with my team-mates and for the fans.”

Ki, who captained Korea Republic at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, will be reunited with a familiar face in Jonjo Shelvey, whom he played alongside in the heart of the Swansea midfield from 2013 to 2016.

Speaking about his new signing, Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez said: “I’m pleased to welcome Ki to the club.

“He is a player with lots of Premier League and international experience and it was an easy decision to bring him here.

“He is the captain of his country, a good character and he will be a good addition to the squad.”

Ki, who is Newcastle’s second signing of the summer after they signed goalkeeper Martin Dubravka on a permanent deal, will officially join the club on July 1.