Newcastle have completed the loan signing of midfielder Stephen Ireland from Premier League rivals Aston Villa until the end of the season.
Ireland, 24, was allowed to leave Villa Park after the club announced that American international Michael Bradley will join the club on loan from Bundesliga outfit Borussia Monchengladbach.
The signing will boost Newcastle’s attacking options with the imminent departure of striker Andy Carroll to Liverpool.
“Stephen has shown over the past few seasons that he’s a real top player so we’re really pleased to have got him until the end of the season,” Newcastle manager Alan Pardew told the club’s official website.
“He can create chances for others and score goals himself, and we think he can be a big factor for us in the second part of this season.”
“I think Stephen feels he can deliver more than he’s shown at Villa so far, so he’s got a point to prove and I believe we can reap the benefits of that.”
Ireland joined Villa as part of the deal that saw James Milner move to Manchester City in the off-season but failed to secure a regular place in the side.
The Republic of Ireland International has fallen out of favour with Villa manager Gerard Houllier, who criticised the attacking midfielder for his work ethic.
Ireland has just made six Premier League starts this season and is yet to score a goal.