Newcastle Utd’s Taylor thrilled with return of Joe Kinnear

Steven Taylor

Steven Taylor

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STEVEN Taylor has backed the appointment of Joe Kinnear as Newcastle’s director of football.

The 66-year-old was confirmed in the role yesterday and Taylor is looking forward to linking up with him again.

The defender and Kinnear worked together during the Irishman’s spell as manager of the club between September 2008 and February 2009, which ended after he suffered a heart attack.

Newcastle were relegated at the end of that season, but Taylor has suggested they would not have gone down if it wasn’t for Kinnear’s departure.

The ex-Wimbledon manager#ss return has been met with bemusement by many fans, and the situation was not helped by Kinnear’s bizarre interview on talkSPORT on Monday night.

Taylor, though, says he is “excited” by the appointment.

“I am really happy to see Joe back at the club and I think his return can only be positive for everyone connected to the club,” he said.

“Joe was great for me when he was manager and I really enjoyed playing for him.

“We were in a great position under Joe in the league until he got ill and it was after that that things went wrong.

“Joe wears his heart on his sleeve, and he tells it as it is and I think he is someone that Newcastle exactly need.

“Joe has lots of experience, and he is very knowledgeable and I for one am really excited to see him back at Newcastle.”

Kinnear has signed a three-year contract at St James’s Park, with the club revealing manager Alan Pardew and chief scout Graham Carr will report to him.

He will “report directly to the club’s board as the senior executive in charge of all football-related matters”, with managing director Derek Llambias left to concentrate on finances.

Kinnear repeatedly mispronounced Llambias’s name in his interview with talkSPORT, and suggested he had resigned from his role as director of football – a post he has never held.

Llambias, though, has welcomed Kinnear back to the club, and believes his arrival will give Newcastle an improved chance of future success.

He said: “The board are pleased to welcome Joe back to the club.

“Joe has many years of experience working within the game and this experience will be of great benefit to the club in achieving our objectives over the coming seasons.”

– DANIEL PRINCE