Belfast Telegraph

Friday 22 August 2014

Kinnear seeks Pardew talks

Joe Kinnear, pictured, is planning to meet up with Alan Pardew as soon as possible

Joe Kinnear will meet with Newcastle manager Alan Pardew as soon as possible after confirming his return to the club as director of football.

The 66-year-old, who managed the club between 2008 and 2009, has signed a contract reportedly for three years to work alongside Pardew. And having not yet spoken to the manager, he hopes to address that at the earliest opportunity to plan for the season ahead.

"Alan's aware of the situation," Kinnear told Sky Sports News. "I'm hoping to meet Alan sometime tomorrow to go through the team itself and where it's glaringly clear we need to be improve."

He added: "That will be my job, to find and buy these players. I'm not picking the team, that's what the manager gets paid for. I'm there solely to see he gets the best possible team on the pitch.

"The tactics are down to him; if he wants my ideas, he can ask for them. I've already had two days with Graham (Carr, chief scout) and I intend to see him on Thursday morning. Between the three of us we will sit down and iron it out, if those two decide a player is not any good I'll listen - it's not a case of 'like it or lump it'."

Kinnear's departure from the club four years ago was down to health issues but he insisted he is fit and ready to return to the Barclays Premier League. The former Wimbledon and Nottingham Forest boss suffered a heart attack before a game against West Brom in February 2009 and, with United favourite Alan Shearer taking charge for the remainder of the season, Kinnear left the club at the end of his contract in May of that year.

But he said: "I'm as fit as a fiddle now. I'm absolutely delighted with the situation. I've been working out in the gym, I go for long walks, I've lost lot of weight - I'm in the best physical shape I've ever been. I've been waiting for the opportunity to come back. I have turned down managerial jobs in the lower leagues, because I felt I'd gone past that and I wanted to get my teeth into something in the Premier League."

Newcastle were relegated that season but Kinnear was keen to absolve himself from blame.

He said: "When I took over we were third from bottom, we were lying 12th when I had my heart attack and we were flying - you could get a million to one on that we were staying up.

"I had the heart attack, I don't really like talking about it, and from there we got relegated. I think the people in and around that club were trying to implicate me in the fact we got relegated when actually it was a load of crap. If I'd still been there that would never happened - just for the record, I've never been manager at a club that's got relegated."

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