Last week, we completed the loan signing of Kenedy from Chelsea and the Brazilian will spend the rest of the season playing under Rafa Benitez. So I thought I'd do an article on our previous loan signings.
Sylvain Distin joined on loan from PSG in September 2001 and played thirty-five times in all competitions in the 2001-02 season as we qualified for the Champions League for only the second time in our history. We wanted to make the move permanent at the end of the season but the Frenchman opted to team up with our former manager Kevin Keegan at newly promoted Man City instead. This was so that he could play in his preferred position at centre-back rather than left-back. He spent five years there before two seasons at Portsmouth, six at Everton and one at Bournemouth but hasn't played since leaving the Vitality Stadium in June 2016.
The season before Giuseppe Rossi arrived on Tyneside on loan from Man Utd, he did score away to Sunderland on his Premier League debut but when he came in on loan for the first half of the 2006-07 season to gain first team experience, he only made thirteen appearances with his only goal coming in a 3-0 win over Portsmouth in the League Cup third round. After his loan spell for Glenn Roeder's side, he went on another loan to Parma for the second half of the season and saved them from relegation and was deadly but injury prone with Villarreal and Fiorentina. He joined Genoa in December five months after his contract with Fiorentina expired.
Probably the most controversial transfer in our history, Ignacio González came in on loan from Valencia as a replacement for James Milner after the board sent Bayern Munich a laughable offer for Bastian Schweinsteiger. Kevin Keegan walked out after stating that he was forced to sign him as executive director Dennis Wise was impressed by him on YouTube. The Uruguayan played in our next two games after he signed but a serious achilles tendon injury meant he never played again for us and during his three years with Valencia, in which time he never played for the Spanish outfit, he also had loan spells at Levadiakos and Levante before joined Standard Liege permanently in 2011, he has also played for Hércules and Nacional and is now with Montevideo Wanderers, at the age of thirty-five, it's safe to say he'll never be as good as Dennis Wise thought he was.
We only brought in one new player in the summer of 2009 and it was Man Utd right-back Danny Simpson and after loan spells at Royal Antwerp, Sunderland, Ipswich and Blackburn during his time at Old Trafford, Simpson joined us permanently in January 2010 and although he wasn't the best player we've ever had, he gave 100% for us and it was a shame to see him go on a free to QPR when his contract expired in 2013. After a year in West London, he joined Leicester and won more Premier League winner's medals there than he did at Old Trafford.
It's easy to forget that Zurab Khizanishvili ever played for us, it's a lot harder to pronounce him name. He only played seven times for us and the only thing that fans will really remember about him was his sending off against Doncaster and he went back to Blackburn after only three months with us. After a couple of loan spells with Reading, he left Ewood Park to join Kayserispor, Dinamo Tbilisi, Samtredia and Inter Baku and is without a club after being released by the latter last summer.
Marlon Harewood only spent three months at St James' Park on loan from Aston Villa but did a good job, scoring five goals in fifteen games for us. This included a double in a 3-0 win against fellow promotion hopefuls Swansea. Since his loan spell ended on Boxing Day 2009 and then leaving Villa the following summer, Harewood has played for seven different clubs but hasn't played since his release from Nuneaton Town in 2016 but the fans will appreciate his contribution during our promotion season even if he wasn't there for long.
Fitz Hall joined on loan from QPR for the second half of the 2009-10 season and put in a solid display on his debut against Cardiff but a hamstring injury against Bristol City left him out for a month. His final game for the club was the title deciding win at Plymouth and after returning to QPR, he won another Championship title in 2011 but after being dropped in favour of Nedum Onuoha when Mark Hughes replaced Neil Warnock in January 2012, he left for Watford six months later and spent the last two years of his career there.
Patrick Van Aanholt
Patrick Van Aanholt was brought in on an emergency loan deal when Jose Enrique got injured (proving Kevin Keegan right when he said he needed another left back in the summer of 2008) but only played seven games before returning to Chelsea. He did score against us when we beat Carlo Ancelotti's men 4-3 in the League Cup in September 2010 but never played very often for the Londoners and after further loan spells at Leicester, Wigan and Vitesse, he headed to Sunderland on a permanent deal, meaning he did the opposite of fellow full backs DeAndre Yedlin and Javier Manquillo (who both played alongside him at the Stadium of Light) by playing for us on loan from a bigger club then joining the Wearsiders permanently from them. He came close to scoring in the March 2016 derby but forced a good save from Rob Elliot. The Dutchman is now with Crystal Palace.
Hatem Ben Arfa
Arguably one of Graham Carr's best ever signings, Hatem Ben Arfa scored a screamer on his first start for the club in a 1-0 win at Everton but his season ended two weeks later thanks to a horror tackle from Nigel De Jong. We signed him permanently from Marseille in January 2011 but after returning to first team action in pre season, he got injured again but that season, his equaliser against Blackburn in the FA Cup was nominated for the 2012 Puskas Award and he won Match of The Day's goal of the month award for April 2012 for his solo run and finish against Bolton. But he eventually fell out with Alan Pardew and was loaned out to Hull in September 2014, he was released four months later after Hull terminated his loan meaning he didn't play again that season as he'd already played for the maximum two clubs (we were counted as he'd already played for our reserves). But after shining for new club Nice in 2015-16, he earned a move to PSG but has struggled to make an impact there.
Stephen Ireland struggled for Aston Villa after joining from Man City in August 2010 and was loaned out to us for the rest of the season in January 2011. He only played two games for us and had been pictured on a night out with Leon Best on the eve of a 4-0 loss at Stoke. Despite being voted the Villa supporters' player of the season in 2011-12, he didn't feature much under new manager Paul Lambert and was loaned out to Stoke in September 2013, where he still plays his football.
Loic Remy snubbed us for more money at QPR in January 2013 before joining us on loan shortly before the following season after their relegation. Despite numerous injuries, the Frenchman netted an impressive fourteen goals on loan at St James' Park but unsurprisingly, we decided not to buy him permanently and he went to Chelsea instead, he only made thirty two appearances in three years at Stamford Bridge and five on loan at Crystal Palace in 2016-17 before he joined Las Palmas where he recently fell out with manager Paco Jémez and has been loaned out to Getafe.
Luuk De Jong
Luuk De Jong turned us down for Champions League football with Borussia Monchengladbach in July 2012 but scored an own goal as the Germans crashed out in the play-offs and then went out of the Europa League in the last 32 whilst we reached the quarter-finals. He joined us on loan in January 2014 but failed to score a single goal (to be fair Pardew did play him out wide) before being flogged to PSV, where he has found his feet again.
Facundo Ferreyra joined on loan from Shakhter Donetsk in August 2014 but didn't play a single minute of first team football on Tyneside as he struggled to cope with the demands of English football. He was limited to reserve team football and being an unused substitute against Gillingham and Tottenham. Unsurprisingly, he went back to Ukraine at the end of the season, where he has been very prolific.
Seydou Doumbia was another striker brought in on loan by Graham Carr with no Premier League experience who hardly got a chance. He was limited to cameo appearances in away losses against Chelsea, Stoke and Leicester, although against Stoke, he nearly saved us an undeserved point towards the end of the game but after watching Emmanuel Riviere start in front of him in an embarassing 3-1 loss to Bournemouth in Steve McClaren's last game in charge, I bet he couldn't wait to leave. He's still on Roma's books but has had loan spells at Basel and Sporting Lisbon since his loan spell on Tyneside.
Christian Atsu was signed on deadline day in August 2016 and after an impressive campaign, he joined us permanently from Chelsea following promotion. So far this season, he's got two goals and three assists.
The final player in this article has been superb so far this season. Mikel Merino was brought in on loan from Borussia Dortmund after numerous impressive displays, the Spaniard signed permanently on 13 October.