Papiss Cisse leaves Newcastle to join Shandong Luneng
By Allan Valente
Last Updated: 09/07/16 4:56pm
Papiss Cisse has left Newcastle United to join Shandong Luneng in the Chinese Super League.
The Sky Bet Championship club announced the 31-year-old Senegal international striker has left St James' Park for an undisclosed fee after four-and-a-half years on Tyneside.
Cisse joined Newcastle from Freiburg in January 2012 and went on to score 44 goals in 131 games for the club.
Newcastle have been busy in the transfer market already after signing striker Dwight Gayle from Crystal Palace for £10m on a five-year contract.
Cisse joins Fabricio Coloccini in leaving Newcastle, with the defender returning home to Argentina to join San Lorenzo.
A statement on the Newcastle website said: "Everyone at St. James' Park wishes Papiss all the best for the next stage of his career."
After completing his move, Cisse issued a farewell message to the Newcastle fans, telling the Chronicle: "I want to put on record my thanks and appreciation for Newcastle fans.
"I will never forget them as long as I live and will be back at St James' Park as a supporter alongside them some day.
"Every goal I scored in that famous No 9 shirt was for them. I hope the team are quickly back in the Premier League.
"We had some great times together and hopefully under Rafa [Benitez] those times return."
Cisse appears likely to play up front alongside Graziano Pelle at Shandong Luneng with the Chinese club also set to sign the Italian striker from Southampton in a £13m deal next week, according to Sky sources.