Seemingly there is never a dull moment at Newcastle United, whether it be player unrest, Stadium name changes, controversial kit sponsors or in the very latest case….the appointment of a Director Of Football .
Newcastle fans were shocked to learn today that former Manager Joe Kinnear has returned to the club as the new Director Of Football. Joe managed the club for a brief period during the disastrous season that saw the Club relegated in 2009. The 66 year old replaced Kevin Keegan, who walked for being undermined and being forced to take a backseat in transfer proceedings to the then Director Of Football, Dennis Wise.
Seemingly Mike Ashley hasn’t learned from past mistakes and forgotten the turmoil and issues it caused when Newcastle last had a Director on board. Ashley also doesn’t seem too concerned by Kinnear’s well documented health problems, the very same health problems that forced Joe to step down as United boss in 2009. If you can recall Kinnear had a heart attack prior to an away fixture at West Brom, a game we won 3-2 in Joe’s absence.
The news of Joe’s return was rumored on social networks at lunch time today, the local journalists were reporting that The Club were looking to hire a Director Of Football and that ‘JFK’ was in the frame for the position. Most fans I saw on Twitter were seemingly taking the rumors with a pinch of salt, as was I. However the rumors soon turned into facts as it was announced that the former Wimbledon manager had put pen to paper on a 3 year deal to officially become Director of Football. I can only imagine that this was in the pipeline for sometime as it seemed to be a very quick and smooth transaction.
Kinnear spoke to Sky Sports News soon after his appointment was confirmed, this is what he had to say:
“It’s an interesting role for myself and I don’t think I could be at a better club to do it.
“It’s absolutely done,” he said. “I signed it with Mike today and that’s taken care of.
“I intend to meet Alan either tomorrow or within the coming week to discuss the future and go through the team itself.
“We will discuss where it’s glaringly clear we need to improve and that will be my job, to go and find those players.”
Joe was asked who would have the final say on transfers, he continued:
“It will be me.
“If between the three of us (Kinnear, Pardew and head scout Graham Carr) we sit down and iron it out and them two decide that he’s not that good, then my ears will be wide open. It’s not a case of lump it or like it.
“If there is somewhere where we are short of people scoring goals, and we see people who will guarantee us 20 goals a season, then we will take that chance and I will buy those players.”
“But if there is a close decision to be made and we are running out of time and it’s something we have to do and I see a specific job…
“Footballers come in all shapes and sizes and if there is a specific job that we need to add some meat or beef to the team, we’ll do it. I believe that’s what we have to do.
“If there is somewhere that we’re lacking pace in wide areas, then we’ll add that to the team. If there is somewhere where we are short of people scoring goals, and we see people who will guarantee us 20 goals a season, then we will take that chance and I will buy those players.
“First and foremost, once I have clarified that with Alan – this is for the good of Newcastle, this is quite clear what needs to happen here – that will be the area I will work in, it’s as simple as that.
“I’m going to do the best I possibly can to make Newcastle a far better team than they are now.”
It will certainly be interesting to see how Alan Pardew reacts to the news of Kinnear’s appointment. However Joe chooses to sugar coat his words, there is no denying that any manager who isn’t given the basic right to decide who he brings in must feel undermined. Appointing a Director surely demonstrates a lack of belief and faith in a Maager’s judgement.
Let’s not forget that last season was diabolical to say the very least. Seemingly humiliation from start to finish, with poor performances and results throughout. Something has to change going into the new campaign, but is this really the answer?! Maybe Alan was told in his review that he would keep his job, but they intend to bring in a Director?!
Either way the news has had a pessimistic affect on the fans who leave themselves scratching their heads in confusion at Ashley’s latest stunt.
What do you guys think?