Belfast Telegraph

Pardew urges local pair to stay

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has told local boys Andy Carroll and Steven Taylor they can achieve their ambitions on Tyneside.

Pardew has spent his first fortnight on Tyneside having to deal with speculation that Carroll could be a target for the Barclays Premier League's big boys, while Taylor will be able to talk to potential purchasers next month if he does not agree a new contract. In addition, the 49-year-old has been forced to warn clubs that midfielder Joey Barton will not be available at a knock-down price in January.

He said: "Andy seems to be a very level-headed guy and from what I have seen of him, he has adhered himself to the place here. This is his town and he is playing for a big city club. He also understands that whatever he wants to achieve in the game and the ambitions he has, he could achieve here."

He added: "He has already got an England cap and if we progress as a team, then maybe those international caps will increase.

"He's a young player who potentially could be a really great player."

That potential was underlined by headlines at the weekend suggesting Tottenham are preparing a £20million bid with Chelsea waiting in the wings, although Newcastle insist they will not be doing business.

Pardew added: "It doesn't surprise me that some of the big clubs are looking at him.

"Having said that, he is very, very important to this football club and I am making that very, very clear to the media and to other managers if they ring me. No-one has rung me, though, so I am just putting it down to speculation at the moment."

Taylor's current deal is due to expire at the end of the season, and he was placed on the transfer list after several rounds of talks failed to produce any kind of agreement.

Pardew said: "I am due to speak to his agent shortly to try to convince him and the player that this is the club to stay at, and the signs from what Steven has shown in training and what he has said are that he does want to stay. But of course, the financial package needs to be right for us and it needs to be right for Steven, and that's what we will be discussing."

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