'Proud' Achraf Lazaar reveals why he couldn't turn Newcastle down
Achraf Lazaar has revealed why he couldn't turn Newcastle United down.
Lazaar joined the club from Palermo last summer in a Â£2million deal.
And the defender, likely to start tonight's FA Cup replay against Birmingham City at St James's Park, says it's a "dream come true" to be playing in English football.
Lazaar watched a game before signing a five-year contract with United.
"It was a dream come true," said the 24-year-old told the match programme. "It was always my dream to one day come and join an English club, and I'm here now.
"I know we are in the Championship, but, for me, Newcastle is one of the biggest clubs, and I know we can do better than that. We are going to be successful.
"Before I signed for Newcastle, I had lots of options to sign for different clubs, but I had a feeling Newcastle is the right place. I'm so pleased and happy to be here.
"The atmosphere at this club is amazing, the passion from the support, the Geordies. To see the stadium full all the time, it's made for the Champions League. I feel like I'm at the right club."
Lazaar, a Morocco international, says he and his family are already settled on Tyneside.
"I'm very proud to live here," said Lazaar. "I've found it very welcoming. Newcastle is such a prestigious club, and my family are here.
"They've found it very welcoming too, and they're very happy to be living here."