Yohan Cabaye admits joining Newcastle was a 'risk' but he is delighted with how things have gone for him.
The French international midfielder surprised a number of people when he opted to join Newcastle this summer, when leaving French champions Lille.
Alan Pardew always insisted that Cabaye was a top-class player and he has wasted little time in showing that.
Cabaye has been one of the catalysts in Newcastle's wonderful start to the new season, which sees them in the top four.
"Was it a risk to join Newcastle? You always take risks in life," he told France Football.
"I needed to discover something new, to leave home. At first indeed, I hoped for a team that played in the European Cup, but when you meet Man United, Man City, Chelsea [in the league], it is just like the Champions League.
"It is important to move to England, with the objective not just to move on.
"I have been surprised because my wife and daughter adapted quickly. It is the very first time I changed my club, and we left for abroad. But we are very fine here."
Cabaye feels that the North of England is similar to Northern France, which has helped him settle. "Newcastle? It looks like North of France. So there is no change to me!"
Cabaye also says that he not shocked by the start to the season, after he saw the talent within the squad.
"Did I expect such a start to the season? Not at all," he said. "But when I discovered the group, I found good players like Fabricio Coloccini or Tim Krul our keeper, who achieved amazing things.
"So I thought we could achieve something great. Newcastle is not favourite to reach the Champions League, that is obvious. But I understood the key period is Boxing Day. We have to remain in form before setting objectives."