Alan Pardew last night promised Newcastle United fans he was doing all he could to ensure the club signed two strikers before the season begins.
The responsibility for acquiring new players falls directly on the head of Joe Kinnear, the club’s director of football.
The Newcastle manager returned home last night from the squad’s week-long training camp in Portugal and has promised to “push hard” those responsible for player recruitment, including owner Mike Ashley.
Pardew admitted a need to be patient in such matters, but patience is a virtue he is surely running short of by this stage of the summer transfer window, as not one new face has arrived at St James’ Park.
Pardew, for the moment, is the only public voice of the club and feels it is his right to tell the supporters what he wants to see happen, which is that signings should be made.
He said: “It is important now that the message we give out is strong and that Joe hopefully secures the strikers that we need.
“I have, of course, been speaking to people at the club while we were in Portugal (about signings).
“It is my job to progress it for the fans and that’s what I am going to try to do. I am the spokesman to the board, to Joe and Mike in particular.
“I am pushing hard to get things done. I want those strikers in. But that can take time and I have to be patient.”
In an interview with the BBC on Tuesday night, when asked about top target Bafï¿½timbi Gomis, Pardew said: “I think we should pursue it as strongly as we can.”
This is an opinion shared by some senior players in the squad who feel the Lyon striker is exactly what Newcastle need in that he’s strong, quick, of the right age and has a good goalscoring
record. But the Gomis deal, with the others that have been mentioned, still seems a long way off from being completed.
Pardew’s side face Blackpool on Sunday before games with St Mirren, Braga and Rangers, before United’s league campaign starts at Manchester City.
Another match abroad has been pencilled in before the Premier League season begins on August 19.
The warm-up matches in Portugal were used more for fitness than anything else, but the manager will now concentrate on performances and results.
Pardew said: “We now need to concentrate on the games we have to play. We must make sure tactically we are good and sharpen up our fitness.
“Hopefully we can get another strong performance in the next game against Blackpool. The performances in the next few matches are really important to us.”
BLACKPOOL winger Tom Ince has revealed he turned down a move to Cardiff because of his gut instinct.
The England Under-21 international traveled to south Wales to discuss a move to the Bluebirds with manager Malky Mackay after a bid was accepted by the Tangerines.
But he revealed that it did not feel like the right move with a young daughter and family in the north-west.
“It just felt the right thing to do, after weighing up all the pros and cons,” said Ince. “Malky has done magnificent things for Cardiff, and I wish them all the very best in the Premier League, but I had to conclude I would not be going there with them. Sometimes, you have to follow your instinct, and my gut feeling was that it just wasn’t right for me.
“I’m still very young. At 21, I’m still learning the ropes and developing, and I’m also thoroughly enjoying my football at Blackpool.
“On top of that, all my family are in the north-west, not least the little baby girl whose recent arrival means I’ve now got a young family of my own to think of.”