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Opinion

As Newcastle ‘search’ for a new manager – John Carver and Steven Taylor quotes reminder from history

2 months ago
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As Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley search for a worthy successor to Rafa Benitez, two words keep breaking into my thoughts…John Carver.

It is now 12 days ago since that official statement appeared saying Rafa definitely wouldn’t be staying.

However, not for a second do I believe them when they say it was only at that point when they ‘realised’ the manager wouldn’t be staying.

I don’t thing Mike Ashley even wanted the Spaniard to stay and certainly ensured there was nothing put on the table to tempt him to do so.

I think we are looking at a minimum of months and probably more like a year, that they have known they would need to find a replacement, so why has nothing happened.

Ashley-friendly media have claimed today that Lee Charnley has been scouring Europe looking for a new manager this past week.

Hmmm, over four years ago we told Lee Charnley was scouring the entire World when looking for a replacement for Alan Pardew.

Pardew effectively left Newcastle United on 28 December 2014, the day NUFC beat Everton 3-2.

The next day, John Carver was put in ‘temporary’ charge.

Exactly four weeks later and after one draw and three defeats (one of those a third round FA Cup match where John Carver said nobody would be stopping him playing a full strength team, then played almost a reserve team, claiming afterwards that there had been a lot of injuries and knocks, only for all of those players to be mysteriously available for the next Premier League match…), Lee Charnley declared that he couldn’t find anybody good enough for the job so far and so John Carver would continue (at least!) until the end of the season.

This is what John Carver and his mate Steven Taylor had to say after that decision/announcement…

John Carver:

“Lee Charnley and the board saw enough on the pitch of how we are trying to play, for them to be encouraged.

“We have got 16 games left and why can’t we go on a run? I have seen enough to suggest we can.

“I am so proud and honoured to be able to be head coach of a football club like this.

“I love being on the training pitch and the role of the head coach is to be hands on out here.

“When you are a manager you have to manage the football club, but the role has changed and it gives me maximum time on the training ground, coaching the players.

“The players have been really positive and have responded. Even though we haven’t won a game yet, I think we’ve played some nice stuff in spells.”

Steven Taylor:

“The perfect choice. I think that is good news for the club and I’m really pleased that the club has made this decision.

“It means everyone will be settled and knows what is happening moving forward.

“John is the man to take us forward now, at least until the summer, and it means we aren’t faced with the distraction of having the names of possible new managers discussed in the media.

“The fact that John is now in this position of being in charge until the summer gives us an element of consistency moving forward.

“Let’s all get behind the new gaffer now, and get right behind the team too, and I’m sure there will be plenty to cheer about in the coming months.”

John Carver certainly went on a run, in his first 19 matches there were two wins, four draws and 13 defeats, his 20th and final match saw Jonas Gutierrez score and inspire Newcastle to beat West Ham 2-0 on the final day of the season, only then did NUFC finally reach safety.

Surely history can’t repeat itself…

Well, under Mike Ashley anything (bad) is possible.

To me it is 100% clear that the plan when Pardew left was for John Carver to get the job long-term and if he had won only a couple of more games, Mike Ashley would have executed that plan. His ideal type of manager/head coach.

As it happened, the worldwide search eventually found a recently sacked from the Championship, Steve McClaren, only 30 mile down the road living on Teesside.

Fast forward four years and with still no Rafa replacement found, Mike Ashley has Neil Redfearn and Ben Dawson in charge, the reserve team coach and former reserve team coach.

Surely it is impossible to think that they could be still in charge when the season kicks off in five weeks time. Isn’t it?

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