Tim Krul has revealed his delight at finally getting his man – £14.5million Newcastle new boy Georginio Wijnaldum.
The Dutch midfielder sealed his move to Tyneside this weekend, putting pen to paper on a five-year deal.
For close pal Krul, it is a massive boost – and the end of a long bid to get his friend to join him at St James’s Park.
“It’s nice to see my mate Georginio signing – he’s a top player and a great addition to the squad,” goalkeeper Krul said.
“I’ve been telling him for years to come here – probably about eight years. You want quality players at the club and I know just how good he is.
“It’s incredible to finally have him. He played a big part in the World Cup in Brazil last summer and was the best player in Holland last year. He has great experience and will bring that to our squad.
“Gini’s got unbelievable fitness and will run non-stop for 90 minutes, he’s got great ability on the ball and will connect play from defence to attack.
“He’s a proper nice guy but a proper professional who wants to win every training session. It doesn’t matter if you’re his mate or not, he’s always on the money and that’s the kind of characters you need.
“He’s got a bit of everything and I’m buzzing that we’ve got him because it’s not easy to get quality like that in.”
Wijnaldum will join up later this week with his Newcastle team-mates in the USA for their pre-season tour.
The Magpies jetted out this morning, with Wijnaldum set to join them after sorting some personal business out in Holland first.
The 24-year-old admits Krul played a big part in convincing him to join Newcastle, but also that talks with boss Steve McClaren persuaded him to leave PSV Eindhoven for the Premier League.
He added: ““At first, I spoke with the Dutch players. I’ve already known Tim Krul for a long time, and he told me he’d been trying to get me to Newcastle for six years.
“Every time we’re with the Dutch national team he says ‘Yeah you must come to Newcastle, it’s a great club for you. You will like it there. The training ground is amazing, the people will like you and you will like the people. The city is also good, the people are nice, kind. So you must make the step to Newcastle’.
“But at that time I first wanted to build my name in Holland and learn more from the Eredivisie, because I think you learn the most if you play a lot of games.
“In the Eredivisie I was sure of that, and I didn’t want to take the risk of going to the Premier League and sitting on the bench, so that’s why I didn’t take that step until now. That’s what I told him (Krul) but he still told me ‘You must come, you must come’.
“So that’s one reason. He told me a lot of good things about Newcastle.
“But I had to see that they really wanted to sign me, and speak to Steve McClaren to see how he wanted to play, and what his plans are for the club.”