Newcastle set to sign Ciaran Clark and Mo Diame in time for opening fixture

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez during the press conference

HITC Sport understands duo should be signed in time to face Fulham.

Newcastle have met the release clauses of Mohamed Diame and Ciaran Clark and hope to have both signed in time to make their debuts ahead of this Friday's Championship opener at Fulham, HITC Sport understands.

The two players will cost a combined fee of just under £10million, with Diame costing £4.5million and Clark £5 million.

Both Hull City and Aston Villa are trying to convince both players to stay put, but Newcastle are confident of getting both players signed.

Mohamed Diame celebrates scoring the first goal for Hull CityMohamed Diame celebrates scoring for Hull City

29-year-old Diame, who joined The Tigers from West Ham in the summer of 2014, has just 12-months left on his current deal at The KCOM Stadium and has turned down the offer of a new contract as he wants to make the move to Newcastle.

The Senegal star - who was Hull's Play-off final hero when he scored the winner in May against Sheffield Wednesday - should sign his deal by Wednesday at the latest.

Clark's move is a huge blow to Villa, given he only signed a new five-year deal last August with the club he has spent his whole career with and has played over 150 games.

The London-born Ireland international had held talks with new Villa boss Roberto Di Matteo - who at he weekend, claimed he was staying put after interest from West Bromwich Albion - but now Rafa Benitez has come calling and looks set to get his man.

Aston Villa's Ciaran ClarkAston Villa's Ciaran Clark

Despite frantic efforts from Villa, 26-year-old Clark is set to join the Newcastle promotion push alongside fellow new signing Grant Hanley, Matz Sels, Isaac Hayden, Jesus Gamez, Matt Richie, Dwight Gayle and Diame.

A Newcastle source confirmed to HITC Sport: "Rafa wanted that bit more in the squad and the club are happy to have moved quickly for both these deals ahead of the opening game - it is a big statement of intent."

Newcastle were already one of the shortest priced favourites to win the Championship in history before adding these two additional signings and their odds are likely to shorten further. 

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