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Newcastle keeper Given dubious over Kinnear

SoccerNews in English Premier League 27 Sep 2008

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Newcastle goalkeeper Shay Given has questioned Joe Kinnear's appointment as the new interim manager at the troubled Premier League club.

Kinnesr, the former Wimbledon manager, was on Friday hired by Newcastle owner Mike Ashley to fill the void following Kevin Keegan's dramatic exit and the forecast sale of the club.

The unexpected deal with the 61-year-old Kinnear came after former England manager Terry Venables rejected the opportunity to plug the gap left by Keegan's abrupt departure on a similar short-term basis.

But Given for one is underwhelmed by Kinnear's arrival at St James' Park.

“Am I pleased? No,” Given told The Sun on Saturday.

“The club is still up for sale and we haven't got a permanent manager so I wouldn't say pleased.

“It's going somewhere I suppose but I don't know if it's a good thing or a bad thing.

“I don't know the man. I've met him and said hello but that's about it.

“The most important thing for the players is to concentrate on Blackburn and on Monday we'll probably meet him.

“I don't know what to say but in an ideal world we'd like the club sorted out and a permanent manager.

“Joe Kinnear's just to oversee things until we get one. It is not an ideal situation.

“No senior players were asked about this as far as I know. I'd class myself as a senior player and no one has told me anything.

“The owner's come out and said he wants to sell the club, so I think the sooner the better so we can move forward.

“There's a lot of uncertainty around the club and it's not helping anyone.”

Questioned on a possible return by Magpies' favourite Keegan if and when the club is sold to new owners Given said: “I didn't want to see him leave, so that answers that.

“It doesn't matter if the new manager or owner comes in next week, nothing can be done until January.”

Kinnear did receive a vote of confidence from former Wimbledon captain turned actor Vinnie Jones who has backed his old boss to be a success on Tyneside.

“I'd be back in England like a shot if Joe wanted any help,” Jones told The Sun from Los Angeles.

“I'm sure he will be able to turn the club around and if he feels I'd be able to contribute in any way, I'd get the next plane back from LA.

“I'm not filming for a few weeks so there is absolutely nothing to stop me if I get a call.”

Jones added: “Joe will be better than the fans think. He was probably the best man-manager I ever played for because he treated players like adults.

“He will breeze into Newcastle and I can guarantee he will make everyone feel at ease because he won't be overawed by what is in front of him.”

Kinnear, who also managed Luton and Nottingham Forest, inherits a squad that has lost its last four matches, is currently second from bottom of the Premier League and will be without key striker Obafemi Martins for the duration of his time in charge.

Kinnear will take charge of the team after Newcastle entertain Blackburn on Saturday and the size of the crowd for that match will give an indication as to how fans have reacted to his appointment.

The Magpies midweek defeat by Tottenham in the League Cup was watched by the lowest crowd seen at St James' in 16 years.

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