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Newcastle United's new sponsors Wonga have announced they will rename the club's stadium St James' Park.

Today the football club announced a new four year deal which will see the internet loan company become the club's lead commercial sponsor.

Wonga also secured the naming rights to the stadium, currently known as the Sports Direct Arena, and will reinstate the old name of St James' Park.

But the decision was met with anger on Tyneside with council leaders and MPs expressing reservations with the deal.

"It's a clever move and clearly has been done in part to deflect some of the criticism of the business they have agreed the sponsorship with.

The fans will be over the moon that the name will be back to what it's always been.

But there will be mixed emotions on the subject as it's a sad indictment of today's society that a company like that is doing so well."

– Fanzine editor Mark Jensen, from

"I'm appalled and sickened that they would sign a deal with a legal loan shark.

I fear the long term social consequences of the decision and I will be writing to Mike Ashley and asking for him to fund the extra debt advice that we will need to provide as a result.

Newcastle United is a role model for thousands of people so what they do matters.

It sets the tone for the city and I don't want this to be a city built on an image of cheap and irresponsible debt."

– Nick Forbes, leader of Newcastle City Council

We are building a club that can regularly compete for top honours at the highest level.

As everyone knows, a strong commercial programme is vital to this goal and I am delighted to welcome Wonga into the fold as our lead commercial partner, alongside Puma and Sports Direct.

Throughout our discussions Wonga's desire to help us invest in our young playing talent, the local community and new fan initiatives really impressed us and stood them apart from other candidates."

– Derek Llambias, Managing Director of Newcastle United,


Brazil and New Zealand to lock horns at St James' Park

Brazil and New Zealand fans are expected to descent on St James' Park this afternoon Credit: ITV

Fans of both Brazil and New Zealand are expected to flock to the North East today as the two men's Olympic teams go head-to-head at St James' Park.

Brazil are currently top of Group C after winning both their games against Belarus and Egypt. New Zealand sit bottom of the group with just one point.

The match kicks off at 2:30pm.

Security staff arrested 24 hours before Olympic match

Three people who were due to work as Olympics security staff at St James' Park in Newcastle have been arrested on suspicion of immigration offences. The Home Office says they were employed by a private security firm.

The three were arrested on Wednesday, just 24 hours before the Mexico v South Korea match. Two people remain in police custody. One has been released without charge.


Council confirm changes to Olympics security

Newcastle City Council say St James' Park would have experienced security issues during the Olympics because "not enough staff" would have turned up under former supplier G4S.

It was announced today that LOCOG had been forced to contract local security companies to fill the shortfall created by G4S. As a result, up to 500 security staff from the North East will now be employed at the stadium from July 26 to August 4.

Stephen Savage, Director of 2015 Operations at Newcastle City Council, said: "Late last week we were advised there would be a shortfall of security staff for St James' Park.

"They [LOCOG] had intelligence to suggest that not enough staff from G4S would turn up for the stadium to be safe.

"Up to 500 staff who have been procured locally, who'll be paid locally, will manage the stadium. They know the stadium - most of them. They've all worked in this environment before, and they're all absolutely approved by the security industry authority."

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