Alan Pardew hands Joe Kinnear summer hit-list

DEFIANT Alan Pardew presented Joe Kinnear with a hit-list of players who he wants to add to Newcastle United’s squad at their first meeting this week.

Alan Pardew and Joe Kinnear
Alan Pardew and Joe Kinnear

DEFIANT Alan Pardew presented Joe Kinnear with a hit-list of players who he wants to add to Newcastle United’s squad at their first meeting this week.

On a day when Derek Llambias quit as managing director – partly on a “point of principle” about Kinnear’s appointment, The Journal understands – Pardew broke his self-imposed silence to confirm he would not be resigning despite the controversial arrival of the former Wimbledon boss.

Despite spending the last few days assessing his position, he used his first contact with Kinnear to re-assert his belief that Newcastle need more experience.

The list is topped by Darren Bent, who the club have already approached Aston Villa to enquire about, and includes other British-based players.

In his new role Kinnear will be expected to present his recommendations to Mike Ashley, and Bent’s arrival is a serious possibility.

Pardew (right), along with Graham Carr, is waiting to see whether the changes at the top will spark a sea-change in the owner’s thinking on summer recruitment, which was set to be limited to one or two new arrivals.

The influential Kinnear has Ashley’s ear and the tone may be different.

A senior source at the club told The Journal that the chaos at the club has forced “everyone” to re-assess their positions, and Pardew has taken some counsel over the last few days.

He heard the Talksport interview that outraged United’s supporter base and privately admits that it may leave Yohan Cabaye unsettled about his future. But Pardew will definitely not resign.

Without being drawn on Kinnear’s appointment, he issued a single line quote confirming he was staying, but sources close to the manager have been much more bullish.

Pardew has told friends he does not want to add to the chaos by resigning and will not “let down” the club staff and players that he has worked with for nearly three years by jumping ship.

He also added that the prospect of a director of football was first mooted after the end of season summit that was held to assess the problems the club encountered last season – although Kinnear was not mentioned. His first meeting with Kinnear was said to be cordial, with the club’s new director of football much less strident than he has been in public.

He was prepared to listen and take advice from Pardew, and was not confrontational.

The manager is prepared to see how the appointment works out in practice, and as long as Kinnear does not attempt to have an influence over team selection or any other aspect of front-line management there is a feeling that it may work.

Kinnear has been asked to limit his public utterances, and did not give a Talksport interview that he was scheduled to give yesterday morning. Although uncertainty continues to cling to the club – and senior officials could not rule out more departures – there was more of a sense of calm among football staff.

However, it is anticipated that the first day of pre-season training will be a difficult one, with Ashley having visited uncertainty on the club by appointing one of his close allies in such a senior position.

It has certainly put the club’s existing staff on the back-foot and Llambias’ departure creates a vacancy for someone to work on the financial side of the football administration.

Financial director John Irving could step up but there may be a new appointment, who would be tasked with finding commercial deals to top those that Llambias managed to strike.

Just a day after putting his name to quotes welcoming Kinnear to the club, Llambias resigned yesterday morning.

It is understood that he had taken issue with the appointment of Kinnear.

“I have had an incredible journey during my five years at the club, including some challenging times. I will reflect with great fondness on my time in the North East and, in me, Newcastle United have a lifelong supporter,” he said in a club statement.

“I want to thank the staff for their hard work, our fans for their support of the club, and wish them all well for the future.”

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer