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Kinnear will not return to Newcastle

Newcastle today confirmed that Joe Kinnear is not returning as manager.

There were reports today that the 62-year-old was poised to resume at the helm as efforts to sell the club continue.

However, the Magpies have released a statement insisting there are no immediate plans to bring Kinnear back.

A statement said: "Reports in the press this morning that Joe Kinnear is to be appointed as Newcastle United manager are not true.

"The position remains that the club is still in the market to be sold and is still negotiating with prospective buyers."

Kinnear took charge at St James' Park in September last year, initially on a short-term contract, and after a promising start was handed the job until the end of the season.

However, his health problems returned in February and after surgery, he was told he could not resume work before the end of the campaign.

In all, the Magpies won only four of the 20 games for which Kinnear was in charge, although both caretaker boss Chris Hughton, the man currently in the hotseat once again, and short-term appointment Alan Shearer managed just one each in their respective spells.

Shearer remains primed and ready to take the job on a permanent basis having held talks with owner Mike Ashley and managing director Derek Llambias in the days immediately after a disastrous end to the last campaign.

However, Ashley then decided to put the club up for sale and with prospective buyers adamant that it is they who will make the appointment, the 38-year-old is as eager as anyone for developments in the sale process.

In the meantime, Hughton and Colin Calderwood are putting the players through their pre-season paces with several having indicated their frustration at the delay and some rapidly losing patience and ready to seek new pastures with the start of the season a little more than three weeks away.