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Jan 14, 2013

Debuchy: Newcastle should be in top half

Mathieu Debuchy has told French media Newcastle United's fans deserve better than watching their beloved club battling against the drop.

• Blog: A compendium of stories

Debuchy, 27, only put pen to paper on a five-and-a-half year deal at St. James's Park ten days ago, and helped Newcastle pick up their first point in four Premier League outings when he made his debut in last weekend's goalless draw at Norwich City.

The stalemate leaves the Magpies just two points above the bottom three, and the French international full-back told French radio station RMC the performances of Alan Pardew's side this season have yet to live up to the club's reputation.

"Newcastle shouldn't be in situation they are in. They're a club that should be in top half of table, we have to win quickly," Debuchy said. "It's true that it's difficult at the minute. The draw did us good, we now have to win on Saturday against Reading."

Debuchy had made public his frustration at not joining Newcastle last summer when Lille refused to sell the right-back, who came through the ranks of the northern French club. After finally completing his switch across the Channel, though he doesn't "have a good grasp of English", Debuchy has settled in quickly thanks to former Lille team-mate Yohan Cabaye.

"I've moved on [from Lille], and I've been quickly adopted here. Yo has helped my integration. He's loved here, that's for sure," Debuchy, who is currently living at Cabaye's house, explained, before adding his top-flight bow at Carrow Road had opened his eyes.

"It's true that it wasn't easy [against Norwich]. I hadn't played for three weeks, so I had to get back into the swing of things. The rhythm is different to Ligue 1, quite frankly. So I had to get used to it," he said. "There's no down time, it goes at 2000km/h from start to finish. Physically, it's on a different level, too. There are things that the referee doesn't whistle, but it's above all in terms of the rhythm of the game that there's the difference."

Debuchy may be the latest to join the ranks of the Newcastle squad, already well-stocked with French players, but is unlikely to have that status much longer with Loic Remy on the verge of completing a move from Marseille.

"Loic has had some problems recently, but we know him: he's a great player and goalscorer, I hope it'll do him good to come here, and he'll score goals and get himself back in the French national side," said Debuchy, who is hoping to catch Didier Deschamps' eye himself. "It's important I hope to be part of [the national squad]. It's up to me to play well for Newcastle to be in it."

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