Newcastle new boy Kevin Nolan did not even realise he could make his debut in the white heat of Sunday's Tyne-Wear derby as he headed for Tyneside on Thursday night.
It only dawned on the 26-year-old midfielder his first game in the black and white stripes could come against arch-rivals Sunderland as he travelled across the Pennines to tie up his £4million switch from Bolton.
Nolan, who will wear the number four shirt for his new club after signing a four-and-a-half-year deal at St James' Park, said: "It's amazing how much hype I have heard since I heard about the move."
He added: "I wasn't really taking much notice of what was going on, so I didn't even know they were playing Sunderland this weekend until I was on my way up here.
"If I get the opportunity to play on Sunday, I will be absolutely delighted.
"It's a massive game to come into and hopefully one in which we can get the win and start getting away from that relegation zone."
Nolan represents manager Joe Kinnear's second breakthrough in the transfer market in the wake of Peter Lovenkrands' arrival last week.
Kinnear confirmed Liverpool-born Nolan will play against the Black Cats, and the former Bolton trainee, who spent nine years at the Reebok Stadium as a professional, cannot wait to make his mark all over again.
He said: "I don't think it's about re-establishing myself, it's about proving that I wasn't just a Bolton player.
"Everyone saw me as 'Mr Bolton', if you like, and it is about going to that next level and showing people what I am all about. Hopefully, I can do that, and I thank Newcastle for giving me that opportunity."
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