Manchester City and Liverpool were linked with a move for the young Frenchman, and it seems the lure of first team football in his preferred position convinced Distin a switch to Maine Road was the right move.
He teams up with former Newcastle hero Kevin Keegan, who is in charge at the Citizens.
"We looked closely at bringing Sylvain to Maine Road before he went to Newcastle before Christmas, but at that stage we were in the First Division and he was understandably looking for a Premiership deal," explained the Manchester club's director of football Dennis Tueart .
"When it became clear that Newcastle were not going to take up their option on the player, Kevin moved very quickly and we a delighted to have Sylvain on board. He is a powerful, quick athlete who has already proved himself at the highest level.
"What is vitally important, too, in the strategy for team building, is that he is a left-sided central defender who is a like-for-like swap for Stuart Pearce who has now, of course, retired."