The rumors were he wouldn’t leave the Derby County gig for St. James Park in January, but Steve McClaren looks to be set for appointment as Newcastle United’s newest manager next week.
McClaren, 54, was fired by the Rams after the American-owned club fell apart down the stretch, missing the playoffs after playing the role of promotion favorite for plenty of the season.
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And though he had reportedly refused to leave Derby for Newcastle when Alan Pardew quit on the club, the union was apparently inevitable. McClaren will work for Mike Ashley next season, according to the BBC.
McClaren, sacked by Derby in May, had turned down the Newcastle job on two occasions – after Alan Pardew’s departure in December and for the final three fixtures of last season.
Patrick Vieira was also considered as an option to become the next boss of the Magpies. However, both parties opted not to pursue a possible deal following differences over recruitment and transfer policy.
That policy is, “Let Graham Carr handle the transfers. You stick to the tactics.” McClaren is apparently good with that, and will take the job when he returns from family vacation next week.
A former England manager, McClaren was an assistant under Alex Ferguson at Manchester United before winning the Eredivisie with Twente and the League Cup with Middlesbrough. The latter means he’ll be familiar with the Northeast, now with the top job in the region.
Good move for the Magpies? It could’ve been worse, as former caretaker boss John Carver was rumored to stay in the running for the job despite quitting Toronto FC and failing miserably down the stretch last year for Newcastle.