Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has revealed his regret at not having signed Loic Remy permanently in January.
The Frenchman looked likely to make the move from Marseille to St James' Park in the transfer window before securing a late switch to QPR, who went on to be relegated.
But Pardew finally landed his top target on a loan deal in August and he has been an instant hit at the club, with five goals in as many top-flight appearances this season.
His brace in the 2-1 victory away to Cardiff City on Saturday saw Newcastle return to winning ways following back-to-back defeats.
And Pardew praised the 26-year-old's impact, while rueing the fact that he failed to clinch a permanent deal at the beginning of the year.
"I wish he had joined in January," he said.
"I still remember the night clearly when we thought we had done the deal.
"We had a nice glass of wine, gave ourselves a nice, hearty, warm handshake and the next day he wasn't there.
"But sometimes in life you have to wait. If you wait long enough it comes around.
"We are really pleased to have him, I thought he was excellent. Not just his two goals, but his work-rate and everything he did was competent."
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