Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 31 July 2014

Kinnear defends work done on deals

Joe Kinnear says he is working hard to bring new players to Newcastle

Newcastle director of football Joe Kinnear has said the club are fighting hard to add players to their squad and that he has not been dragging his heels in the transfer market.

The Magpies are yet to make a summer signing except for teenager Olivier Kemen from Metz, with the start of the new Barclays Premier League season just two weeks away. Kinnear is at the forefront of player acquisition following his appointment by owner Mike Ashley in June.

"I'm well aware that everyone is concerned (about the lack of transfers) and rightly so, but I'm not dragging my heels in any manner," he added. "I'm being sensible about the budget I have got and am going to spend it as wisely as I can - I keep (manager) Alan (Pardew) well informed and have regular meetings.

"We sit down on a regular basis and talk about the type of players we want, the best type of players for the Newcastle fans."

Lyon striker Bafetimbi Gomis is believed to be close to a move to St James' Park but a deal is yet to be announced and Kinnear admits it is becoming difficult to land transfer targets.

"We are fighting hard," he told Sky Sports News. "There are two or three of us (clubs) all seemingly to be wrapped around the same players and, as I have said to Mike, it is a serious battle that we need to win and we are very close to achieving that.

"There are always extra add-ons, always an extra thing and always an extra problem and then there is always the problem of competition from other teams.

"Whatever I have offered more or less goes public and of course that alerts other people that are interested, they tweak it and add a little bit more and we are in that sort of war at the moment.

"I'm waiting for a nod, on which the goalposts have moved on numerous occasions, to bring in a couple of strikers."

Newcastle finished 16th last season and Kinnear's appointment to work alongside Pardew was met by widespread criticism among the club's supporters.

The former Republic of Ireland international had an ill-fated spell in charge of the club in the 2008-09 season before his surprise return this summer.

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