Newcastle fans urge Mike Ashley to fill the void left by Derek Llambias
The arrival of Joe Kinnear has led to upheaval at St James' Park
Friday 21 June 2013
Newcastle fans have urged owner Mike Ashley to fill the vacuum left by Derek Llambias' departure by installing a dedicated management team to run the club.
Llambias' resignation as managing director has cost the club the services of the man who supervised much of the day-to-day business at St James' Park and, perhaps more significantly in the current circumstances, one of the key players in transfer negotiations.
New director of football Joe Kinnear has been charged with the task of assuming some of those responsibilities, but there are gaps still to be plugged.
Ashley could turn to finance director John Irving and club secretary Lee Charnley in an attempt to fill the void, but Mark Jensen, editor of online fanzine http://www.themag.co.uk, admits some supporters would like to see a more radical plan.
Jensen said: "I'm sure there will be some optimists who will in some way think it's a brilliant opportunity for Mike Ashley to put a really tip-top professional management team in place and give it five years to take the club where it is capable of being.
"But this is an inherent weakness of the way Mike Ashley runs Newcastle - and that's an understatement.
"Many clubs would have a board of directors and if the chairman or managing director resigned, they would at least have somebody there who could take over and run the club."
In the short term, the Magpies are desperately trying to restore a measure of order to life on Tyneside after a tumultuous few days.
For the time being at least, Kinnear and manager Alan Pardew have started to process of planning the way forward with the manager adamant he is staying at the club despite having seen the 66-year-old Irishman parachuted in above his head.
Graham Carr's future as chief scout remains unclear after a series of early meetings with his new boss, although Pardew will hope to keep the staff which served him so well during the 2011-12 season in place and onside as he attempts to bounce back from a far more testing campaign last time around.
The manager has made no secret of the fact that he wants to add experience, and perhaps more importantly, Premier League experience to his squad after seeing the French quintet he signed in January take time to adapt to the rigours of English football.
He emerged from end-of-season talks with Ashley and Llambias confident he would be able to do that.
However, the goal-posts have since been moved, and the coming weeks will reveal exactly how far they have travelled.
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