Pardew pleased with Kuqi capture

Newcastle United have confirmed the signing of Finnish international Shefki Kuqi.

Kuqi, 34, left Swansea in the summer by mutual consent following a one-year tenure at the club and has been recruited by the Magpies on a free transfer following the exit of star front-man Andy Carroll to Liverpool.

He joins Nile Ranger, Leon Best and Peter Lovenkrands as the club's available strikers.

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"We needed another option up front, because we're a little light there due to the temporary loss of Shola [Ameobi], and Shefki will provide us with something different," said Toon manager Alan Pardew.

Kuqi is an experienced Premier League player and Pardew will be hoping that the big Fin will be able to emulate some of the form he has previously shown at this level.

"He's match fit and knows the English game well having been in the country for the best part of 10 years. He is ready straight away and that's what we wanted.

"Shefki is a good, honest pro who will give us a strong physical presence from the bench," added the Newcastle boss.

Kuqi, famous for his flying bellyflop goal celebration, first arrived in England when Stockport County secured his signiture in 2001. He has since played for Blackburn Rovers, Ipswich Town, Sheffield Wednesday, Crystal Palace and Fulham.

By Chris Smith