Matt Ritchie reveals why he couldn't turn Newcastle down

Matt Ritchie
Matt Ritchie

Matt Ritchie says he simply couldn't turn Newcastle United down – even though he loved his time at Bournemouth.

The winger last week joined the club in a £10million deal.

And Ritchie – who has signed a five-year deal – is relishing working with Rafa Benitez at St James's Park.

The 26-year-old helped Bournemouth win promotion from the Championship the season before last.

"I loved my time at Bournemouth," said Ritchie. "It was very successful.

"But when a club like Newcastle comes calling, with the position it has and the manager, it was always going to be a difficult one to turn down."

On United manager Benitez, Ritchie added: "He's a massive draw.

"He's won just about everything there is to win in football and I'm really looking forward to working with him."

Ritchie has been impressed by the standard in training at Newcastle.

"It's not an easy league to get out of, but hopefully we can be successful," said the Scotland international.

"We have a good group of players."