John Carver has said that Newcastle turned down an offer for Papiss Cisse last week.

We brought news back then that  Arabian Gulf League champions Al Ahli were said to be trying to sign the Newcastle striker according to reports from Abu Dhabi.

The United Arab Emirates transfer window didn’t close until midnight on Thursday 12 February and now Carver claims that he was supported by the club, with Mike Ashley not cashing in on the striker.

John Carver:

“I wanted to keep hold of him and I was supported 100% by Lee (Charnley). It was a relief to be supported to be honest as it is a good sign.”

Goals win matches:

 “I said before he went off to the Africa Nations that he was our top goal scorer and that the only way you win matches is by scoring goals.

“I said to Papiss before the Palace game that he was back in the team, but not to feel pressure to score that night.”

Creating and missing chances:

“I said to him at half-time that he was having a pretty average night up until that one chance, and he was in the right area to score it. It’s amazing what that one goal can do as he has been lively about the place, he has been smiling.

“What I will say is that up until the Palace game we have been creating and missing chances. We haven’t taken those opportunities and if Papiss had been there he would have finished off one or two of them.”

There will be some fans cynical of the timing of these claims by John Carver, as both he and the club are getting so much stick for leaving the squad in such a perilous position in terms of the defence.

By getting rid of Mapou, Santon and Streete in January and bringing nobody in, United now have only four fit defenders to see out the season after Paul Dummett was ruled out.

If they had sold the club’s only credible out and out striker as well, it would have been a whole new low.