JOE Kinnear believes his long friendship with Graham Carr can only help Newcastle United’s transfer activity this summer.
Kinnear, the Magpies’ new director of football, has known chief scout Carr for more than 30 years.
The two men have had a number of meetings this week as they look to progress the club’s signings.
Carr has been the key figure in Newcastle’s transfer policy over the last couple of seasons, unearthing players like Yohan Cabaye, Sylvain Marveaux, Cheick Tiote and Papiss Cisse for relatively modest sums.
Kinnear’s arrival as director of football – and claims that he would be in charge of all transfers – led to reports that Carr was considering his position at the club, especially as Kinnear had put the block on a free transfer move for Brazilian defender Douglas, who Carr had recommended.
But Kinnear insists the pair – and manager Alan Pardew – can all work together to improve Newcastle’s squad.
“I’ve known Graham since he started off managing in non-league football,” the former Wimbledon boss said.
“I’d known Graham for 10 years when he was at Spurs.
“We’re both on the same street.
“As long as it’s truthful talk, it’s something positive.
“We’re going to sit down and ask Alan Pardew ‘what do you think about the team? What do you think we need?’
“I’m going to say what I say. Alan’s going to say what he says.
“We’ll sit down and discuss (things). We’re not kids. We want the best for Newcastle.
“Three of us can sit down and iron out what we think is the best for Newcastle.
“Our role is to get the best players and the best team that Newcastle have. That’s what I intend to do.”
Pardew is believed to want more British players in his squad, with moves for Aston Villa striker Darren Bent and West Ham United defender James Tomkins – both of whom the Newcastle boss knows well – having been mooted in the last few weeks.
That would mean a shift in the club’s transfer policy, but Kinnear – while mindful that the days of big-name transfers are over at the club – believes there are enough ‘solid’ players out there to help Newcastle return to the top half of the Premier league table after last season’s flirt with relegation.
“I’m not saying ‘hey – let’s go and get Ronaldo and Messi.’ They’re out of our range,” admitted the 66-year-old.
“But if we see what we believe are good, solid players, I don’t see why we shouldn’t be in the top 10.
“Each night I’ll be going to matches. Maybe I’ll be going out of the country with Graham. We’ll travel around.
“We’ll go elsewhere to try and open the doors on new signings.”