Monday 19 March 2018

Carver: I pick the team

John Carver has made it clear he would not stand for boardroom intervention in team selection
John Carver has made it clear he would not stand for boardroom intervention in team selection

Newcastle head coach John Carver has insisted he would not stand for boardroom intervention in team selection.

Carver, who has been handed the reins at St James' Park until the end of the season, is adamant he and he alone will pick the team amid claims that Rangers boss Kenny McDowall has been told he must play the five loan players the Magpies have sent up to Ibrox on loan.

Derek Llambias, the former Newcastle managing director now running day-to-day affairs at Rangers as chief executive, has since denied that, but Carver would not truck any interference of that nature at St James' Park.

Asked if he would be happy to be a "yes man", he replied: "Let me tell you, I am definitely not that kind of person.

"The conversations I've had with the club have been honest and frank and straight about the team. Obviously I've got to give my opinions about individuals and I'll give my honest opinion about what I think.

"What I won't have is anybody telling me, for example, what team to pick. 'Should you not pick him ahead of him?' - I won't have that and I won't stand for that. As soon as that situation - If that situation - started to develop, then I would stop it straight away.

"I'm quite happy to work under the parameters of being the head coach, organising the team, running the team and picking the team. I'm happy with that.

"But once we go into the realms of other people telling me which team to play and all that, that's not the realm of the head coach.

"In fairness, myself and (managing director) Lee (Charnley) have a good understanding on that because we both made it quite clear at one of our first meetings when we sat down and discussed it.

"I can guarantee to people out there that I'm definitely not going to be a yes man. I'm going to be myself, I'm going to do it the way I want to do it. If I'm successful, then great. If I'm not, at least I can say at the end of the day that I did it my way, and then I've got nobody else to blame."

Last Saturday's 3-0 victory at Hull - the first of Carver's reign to date - was a case in point with the 50-year-old revealing he exchanged text messages with Charnley before the game in which the line-up was never discussed.

He said: "I've got to tell you, we played Hull last weekend and I got a text message from Lee Charnley saying, 'Good luck', so he didn't even know what the team was.

"I have texted him the team some times this season, but I didn't at Hull and I won't be doing so this weekend.

"I won't be telling him - I don't have to. I pick the team. I don't pick the Rangers team, mind."

Just who does pick the Rangers team has been a topic of intense debate in recent days, but Carver was steadfast when asked if his five loanees have it written into their contracts that they must play if they are fit.

He said: "Absolutely not. If they go up there and aren't good enough to get into the team, that's our problem.

"Could you imagine me being the Rangers manager and all of a sudden these guys come to Rangers and they're saying these lads have got to play?"

Carver was also quick to dismiss suggestion from full-back Davide Santon's girlfriend that the Italian was pushed out by the club to re-join Inter Milan on loan.

He said: "I've got to be honest I think it's a great move for him. It's the club he's come from, it's where he's from and maybe his girlfriend just finds it difficult because she'll have to move over there.

"From a footballing point of view, it's a great situation for him and for us. He wasn't pushed out."

Press Association

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