AN influx of French signings at Newcastle United has prompted a nearby pub to re-name itself to make the players feel at home.

The Strawberry, a legendary Newcastle United-themed pub situated just yards from St James' Park has been re-christened 'La Fraise' to honour the club's latest signings.

The historic pub now has a Francophile ring to its name after Alan Pardew signed four French players in the January transfer window - Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa Yoan Gouffran, and Massadio Haidara.

The arrivals have increased the number of Frenchmen in manager Alan Pardew's squad to ten, along with several French-speaking players.

The latest signings mean that Newcastle could be re-christened 'Armée de Ville'

instead of the Toon Army as they could even side a team of entirely French players, with the exception of their goalkeeper Tim Krul - who is Dutch.

The Magpies are also planning on signing Moussa Sissoko from French Ligue 1 side Toulouse.

The re-named Strawberry was unveiled this afternoon (FRI) when owner Michael Hill put up a banner to replace the pub's traditional English name.

Caroline Armstrong, co-owner of the Strawberry, said: "It's all tongue in cheek.

"We've had such an influx of French players, so we wanted to welcome the new contingent and make them feel at home.

"Michael put the banner up today.

"We have got a lot of French players now, but the fans are pleased with the signings and are glad that we're actually spending some money on some good players.

"We could start serving more French beers- we've got Kronenburg at the moment, and I suppose maybe even French food - watch this space."