The Newcastle United player next in line to follow Ciaran Clark out of the exit door

Ciaran Clark won’t be the last Newcastle United player to leave the club this summer.

Newcastle United have confirmed the departure of Ciaran Clark on a season-long loan deal to Sheffield United.

The Republic of Ireland defender, who is out of contract next summer, is certain to have his last game for the Magpies after a six-year spell.

During his years on Tyneside, Clark made over 120 appearances and was named United’s player of the season at the end of their Championship promotion-winning campaign.

Clark became a consistent and reliable performer for United however endured a difficult campaign last season after being left out of the 25-man squad for the second half of it.

He gradually fell out of favour under Eddie Howe after two red cards - one against Norwich City and another in a friendly against Al-Ittihad.

Ciaran Clark has left Newcastle United and joined Sheffield United. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

On his return to pre-season, Clark was told to train with the under-23s until he found a new club, with the Blades winning the race for his signature.

Clark joins Freddie Woodman (Preston North End), Isaac Hayden (Norwich City) and Jeff Hendrick (Reading) out the exit door so far this summer.

Ciaran Clark on his decision to join Sheffield United

“I’m delighted,” Clark said on his move to Bramall Lane. “I’ve had a couple of conversations with the manager, we talked about the style of play, me knowing a few of the boys and the challenge that is in front of us.

“I’m looking forward to playing regularly, fitting into the style of play and formation, we know the Championship is tough but with a huge togetherness and a big effort by everyone, the squad has the quality to get out of the league.

“I saw how close the club went last season and the aim now is to get promoted.

“I’m excited to be back playing football and being involved again. I know a couple of the boys and I have spoken to them. It’s a challenge I am looking forward to. It’s one that I think is realistic and I am hoping for a good season.

“I have watched the games, the gaffer has explained the formation and style of play. I know there is going to be competition for places and it’s one that I am excited about.

“It’s a tough league. I have played there for Newcastle and it’s a tough league to get out of. Everyone knows that but this squad has the quality and togetherness to be able to do that.”

Clark won’t be the last to go

Indeed, Clark is unlikely to be the last player to leave St James’ Park with Dwight Gayle in line to depart next.

The striker, signed from Crystal Palace in the same summer as Clark, failed to start a Premier League match last term with all eight of his appearances coming as a substitute.

Gayle, 32, is attracting interest from a number of second-tier clubs after also being ordered to train with the under-23s.