John Carver says he is looking forward to going ‘toe to toe’ with Alan Pardew then giving him a big cuddle.

I have a feeling that Newcastle fans would be quite keen on indeed seeing the pair of them going properly toe to toe, though not many will appreciate the sight of the mutual love-in afterwards.

Ahead of the match at Palace, the club have released some quotes from John Carver’s pre-match press conference;

“Alan and I are both professionals and want to win. We’ll be toe to toe in the technical area but after there’ll be one big cuddle.

“Our record at Palace is excellent. It’s a stadium that will be lovely but our support there’s been fantastic and we need the same.”

Alan Pardew is ‘one of the best’;

“I’ve worked with a lot of top coaches and managers and Alan is one of the best I’ve worked with. Alan gave me my opportunity to come back here. I’m grateful for that and I learnt so much from him.

“Hopefully everyone is okay. I think we’re in good place health-wise, and we are looking forward to the game.”