Newcastle closing in on new boss

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Published: Wednesday 10th June 2015 by The News Editor

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Newcastle are closing in on their new head coach after parting company with John Carver.

The 50-year-old, who replaced Alan Pardew for the second half of last season, left the club along with coach Steve Stone on Tuesday.

Press Association Sport understands Steve McClaren remains in the driving seat to fill the vacancy, but that the Magpies were not prepared to formalise arrangements before they had spoken to Carver and told him of their plans.

McClaren is due to return from a family holiday on Wednesday and the two parties are expected to attempt to rubber-stamp a deal in short order.

The former England coach was the club’s preferred choice in the immediate aftermath of Pardew’s departure in January, but turned down the opportunity to head for St James’ Park to concentrate instead on trying to lead Derby into the Barclays Premier League.

The 54-year-old was ultimately unsuccessful in his mission, which saw the Rams even miss out on the Sky Bet Championship play-offs, but rejected a second approach from the Magpies in May with their own season unravelling in alarming fashion.

But his dismissal by Derby came at the right time for Newcastle managing director Lee Charnley, who has been handed responsibility for making the appointment by owner Mike Ashley.

Carver’s exit ends his second spell at the club, where he had previously worked under Ruud Gullit and Sir Bobby Robson.

He was handed the reins until the end of the season after an initial search for a new head coach proved fruitless, and he signalled his intention from the off to win the job on a permanent basis.

However, events conspired against him and as results declined depressingly in the face of an injury and suspension crisis, he was unable to halt a worrying slide down the table.

Under his charge, the Magpies won just three of the 19 league games they played and collected only 13 from a possible 57 points, the last three of them from a 2-0 victory over West Ham on the final day of the season when anything less might have condemned them to the drop.

Nevertheless, Carver continued to insist he wanted the job and was involved in discussions over summer spending plans and pre-season fixtures, but the writing was on the wall long before Tuesday’s news.

Published: Wednesday 10th June 2015 by The News Editor

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