Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Lie - Kevin Keegan had full control of transfers

Transfer control is a contentious issue at the club and has been for much of the past year. Fan fears that Dennis Wise would be interfering with Kevin Keegan’s vision when he was appointed Director of Football back in January 2008 were quickly allayed by the man himself.

"I'm here to help Kevin, bringing young players through and also recommend certain players to him, he'll say yes and no, he has the final word, no-one else. Everything that happens will be run past him. I'm not going to bring players in behind his back - I'm not into that. A lot of people have got mixed up with the reason why I am here. I'm not here to be involved in the first team, I'm not here to manage. I have to concentrate more on the academy, we need some young blood coming through of our own. We need to look abroad for players and that's my intention over the next few years."
Then in May, just before the transfer window opened Chris Mort reiterated who was in charge

"We have started talking about who we will be bringing in and Kevin will have the final say"
But less than a week after the close of a transfer window that had seen a net profit of £2Million for our owner, the word “transfers” was conspicuous by it’s absence in a list of the managers responsibilities included on one of several statements released following KK’s departure.
"It is a fact that Kevin Keegan, as manager, had specific duties in that he was responsible for the training, coaching, selection and motivation of the team. It is a fact that Kevin Keegan was allowed to manage his specific duties without any interference from any Board member. It is a fact that Kevin Keegan agreed only to deal with the media in relation to Club matters relating to the Team and not to communicate with the media in relation to the acquisition or disposal of players."
That’s not enough to condemn them though. The NUFC stance is that Keegan couldn’t talk to the media about acquisition or disposal, but who’s to say that behind closed doors, his isn’t still the most important voice? Well, Mike Ashley is
I am prepared to back large signings for millions of pounds but for a player who is young and has their career in front of them and not for established players at the other end of their careers. There is no other workable way forward for Newcastle. It is in this regard that Dennis and his team have done a first class job in scouting for talent to secure the future of the club.
You only need to look at some of our signings to see that it is working, slowly working. Look at Jonas Guttierrez and Fabricio Collocini. These are world class players. The
plan is showing dividends with the signing of exceptional young talent such as Sebastien Bassong, Danny Guthrie and Xisco.
So despite earlier claims from Dennis Wise himself that he wouldn’t even be involved with the first team and that he was there to concentrate on the academy, now the owner had come out and admitted that Wise was instrumental not only in signing but also scouting five of our new first team acquisitions, though why he’d want credit for Xisco is beyond me.

The strange thing is, now that Joe Kinnear is in charge, his remit seems to be more wide ranging than the club are willing to admit Keegan's was. Kinnear has discussed several acquisitions and disposals at great length in the media. Notably, Joe was hoping for funds to buy Ebondo and Mbia on January 14th.
“We do need funds. It won’t be a massive amount, but I’m still hopeful Mike will release them.”
At the time it was alarming that Ashley hadn’t released any funds yet when we were already two weeks into the transfer window. Later it became plain confusing as Managing Director Llambias peddled the notion that the club were actually on the transfer trail long before the window had opened two weeks earlier.
“We started working on day one, from way before the window opened. We did try for another midfielder – Kieran Richardson – and we tried for Ebondo at Toulouse.”
Get your stories straight chaps, how are we to believe the multitude of claims around bids being put in for other players (Onuoha, Richardson, Johnson, Elano and Mbia) with such diverging flights of fancy behind your claimed interest in Ebondo.