Alan Pardew will be asked to account for Newcastle United’s end-of-season slump at a pre-arranged summer summit with Mike Ashley – with David Moyes’ sudden availability putting his role under further pressure.
Ashley will return from a three-week holiday in Miami in the coming days but it his end-of-season meeting with Pardew which is now exercising minds at St James’ Park. There is understood to be a measure of dismay at the side’s slump, although managing director Lee Charnley continues to insist it is business as usual.
The Journal understands that in the week after the season Ashley will meet Pardew in London – and Moyes’ availability offers a ready-made alternative who has been approached for the job by the owner before.
The Newcastle boss faced a similar inquest into last season and the consequence of those discussions was the decision to` appoint a new director of football, with Joe Kinnear handed the responsibility.
Pardew will once again have to justify his efforts this season, with the final decision resting in the hands of owner Ashley.
The situation is intriguing because United are understood to have tried to lure Moyes to Tyneside on two occasions while Ashley has been in charge of the club. Sources in Merseyside confirmed that Everton resisted both approaches for Moyes, who was fired by Manchester United after failing to win round the influential Old Trafford dressing room.
Newcastle have also shown previous interest in Steve Bruce, who has bolstered his reputation at Hull City in the last two years.
Meanwhile, United are ready to turn to Spain to recruit this summer – and will look to progress a deal for Tenerife forward Ayoze Perez. The Journal understands that managing director Charnley met with a Madrid-based agent recently in order to discuss potential La Liga targets for the club, who have been actively scouting matches in the country recently. In addition to those moves a deal for Perez, who would join the club’s development group next season, is understood to be at an advanced stage with second-tier Spanish outfit Tenerife.
Whatever happens to the manager the club have begun to source targets for the summer and individual moves are awaiting the green light from Ashley, who has already signalled that there will be money available.
France remains a key area for the club, but there has been more resistance from Ligue 1 clubs in the last two transfer windows and there has been a conscious decision to cultivate contacts in other clubs.
In addition to that there are hopes of bolstering the club’s quota of British-based players, which explains the club’s willingness to negotiate with Jack Colback’s representatives.
Newcastle have been made aware of Colback’s availability and had a fresh round of talks with the Sunderland midfielder’s agent earlier this month. There is interest from the Magpies in taking a player who would replace the outgoing Dan Gosling in the first-team group.
Newcastle desperately need to refresh a squad that has struggled for motivation in the last few weeks and looks to have reached a crossroads.
Injuries are mounting up, and behind closed doors the club have admitted that Davide Santon has played his last game of the season – and possibly his last for Newcastle. There is interest from Roma in the left-back, who is angling for a contract extension but will not be given one.
Similarly, Papiss Cisse is out for the season – and may even miss pre-season – while Luuk de Jong will not play at Arsenal after twisting his ankle. The striker has been underwhelming since moving from Borussia Monchengladbach on a long-term loan but he still wants to make the switch permanent. “I twisted my ankle, but I hope it’s not too bad. I hope it’s going to be OK,” said de Jong.
Despite reports in the Portuguese press, midfielder FilipDjuricic is not understood to be a target of Newcastle.