Newcastle United's Demba Ba: I am in the best league in the world

The Senegal international striker feels that he was let down by the French youth system but looks forward to a successful future in the Premier League
Newcastle United's in-form striker Demba Ba has revealed his pleasure at playing in the Premier League despite some set-backs in his early career in France.

Ba appears to be enjoying life in the north-east of England and is currently the Premier League's third leading goal scorer with 16 goals so far this season.

However, things were not always easy for the striker as he struggled to break into professional football as a teenager in France.

"At 16 years, I tried to get into a training centre in France to learn from great coaches. Unfortunately, it did not happen for me," Ba told RMC Sport.

"They did not really believe in me in France. I started in CFA [Championnat de France amateur] in Rouen before leaving for Belgium."

Ba then embarked on his professional career with Excelsior Mouscron in Belgium before transferring to Hoffenheim in Germany.

He is now a key part of a Newcastle United squad who have prospered with the help of the Senegal international and occupy sixth position in the Premier League, one point away from the Champions League qualification zone.

Ba was linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain in the January transfer window, but reaffirmed his loyalty to Newcastle.

"My future? I am already in the best league in the world with all the big teams there is. I'm very focused on this end of season, we want to achieve something and I would like to see it happen."