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French double-winner traded Champions League for life in England's top flight and isn't regretting the decision now as a vital cog in the Magpie's engine room

Newcastle United midfielder Yohan Cabaye insists fixtures like Saturday's trip to champions Manchester United are the reason he joined Tyneside.

The Frenchman switched from Ligue 1 winners Lille to St. James' Park last summer, trading the bright lights of Champions League football for the competitiveness of the Premier League.

Cabaye insists the decision is already paying dividends, revealing that facing huge clubs on a weekly basis is what drives him as a professional.

"This is the real football," he told his club's official website. "This is why I signed for Newcastle.

"It will be like a Champions League match and that is fantastic. I want to play every week in matches like this.

"It will be difficult though," he added. "Manchester United are a very good side and we know it won't be easy.

"We have to work hard and play like we did in the second half against Manchester City. If we do that for the full match then we will hopefully get one or three points."

The 25-year-old has been a revelation for Alan Pardew's this season, starting every match for Newcastle in the top flight thus far.

Newcastle United head into Old Trafford in fourth place, just four points behind second-place Manchester United.

The Magpies will be looking to bounce back after suffering their first defeat of the season last weekend against league leaders Manchester City.