Islam Slimani has suggested that he would be willing to pen a permanent deal with Newcastle United should he keep the club in the Premier League.
The 29-year-old has endured a frustrating spell since his £29m switch from Sporting Lisbon to Leicester City 18 months ago and is desperate to reignite his career under Rafael Benitez on Tyneside.
Slimani could make his Newcastle debut, a thigh injury permitting, in Sunday's home clash with Manchester United, and the Algeria international expressed his eagerness to impress at the club.
“I feel most comfortable in the No 9 shirt so why not in the future here? I’d be very happy if I could stay here longer. My objective is to score goals here. I already knew a lot about Newcastle and about Alan Shearer. It’s a great club, a very famous club, renowned around the world. I’m happy to be here.
“The big difference between Newcastle and Leicester is that Rafa Benítez trusts me and having the trust of your coach is very important. Before I joined, Rafa phoned me, we had a good chat and there was a good feeling between us. It’s important to get a call like this, to know you’re wanted by a big coach like him. We’ve spoken a lot about a lot of topics, many, many subjects.
“I hope I can show what I’m capable of. At Leicester it was always about injuries but I’m here to give my best fight to the team. My aim is to give 100% every single match. I wanted to leave Leicester, I needed a fresh start, Newcastle’s a big club and it’s a good choice for me. A lot of clubs got in touch but I’m pretty sure I made the right choice.”