Perez keen to kick on

Striker Perez joined Newcastle a year ago from Spanish side Tenerife and, despite little being expected of him so early in his career, scored seven goals in 36 Premier League appearances.

The 20-year-old impressed sufficiently to win a first cap for Spain’s U21 side and he hopes his first-season progress will continue as the club look to avoid the kind of relegation battle that had players and supporters alike biting their fingernails before the final day win over West Ham.

Speaking to on the anniversary of his arrival, Perez said: “For me, playing in the Premier League was a dream since I was a child and Newcastle United has given me the chance to make this dream come true.

“It has been an unforgettable year and I hope it’s just the beginning of something big here in Newcastle.

“I’ll never forget my first time in St. James’. When I entered in the pitch, it was awesome. I also remember with a smile my first goal in the Premier League against Tottenham; we won that match with this goal.

“And of course, I will keep forever in my memory the return of Jonas (Gutierrez) against Manchester United.

“Now I’m looking forward next season to seeing the Toon Army in St. James’ again, and giving them better moments than this year.”