Former Aston Villa star finds new club after Newcastle United release - could feature v Sunderland

Ciaran Clark has found a new club, over three months after his release from Newcastle United.
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Clark has joined Championship club Stoke City until the end of the 2023-24 season. The 34-year-old spent last season on loan at Sheffield United, making 11 appearances in all competitions as the club were promoted back to the Premier League.

Clark was released by Newcastle following the end of his loan. Despite the summer transfer window closing on September 1, Clark has been able to find a new club as a free agent.

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The defender was a key player for Newcastle in their 2016-17 Championship winning season but quickly fell out of favour following the appointment of Eddie Howe as head coach. An early red card in a crucial ‘relegation six-pointer’ against Norwich City and another in a friendly match against Al Ittihad in Saudi Arabia ultimately ended Clark’s playing career at Newcastle.

He was left out of the squad for the second half of the 2021-22 season despite continuing to train with the side before joining Sheffield United on loan.

Clark scored 11 goals in 129 appearances for Newcastle over a six-year spell following his arrival from Aston Villa in 2016.

The 36-time Republic of Ireland international could make his Stoke debut when they return to action at home to Sunderland after the international break. Clark joins former Magpie Dwight Gayle at the bet365 Stadium.

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Following his arrival, Clark told the Stoke club website: “I’ve missed the feeling of being in the dressing room and preparing week-to-week for Saturdays.

“I worked hard throughout pre-season and have kept myself in good shape since, so I am keen to get out there with the lads over the next couple of weeks, as the feeling of those sessions is something you can’t replicate alone.

“With the quality of players we have, if we find some consistency, I believe we can go on and have a good season.”

Clark’s only two seasons spent in the second tier during his career have resulted in promotion. But Stoke currently sit 21st in the Championship with just three wins in their opening 11 matches of the league season.