- Premier League
Shearer denies having input in bar name change
Newcastle legend Alan Shearer has disputed claims that he was fully consulted by the club in their decision to re-brand the bar named in his honour at St James' Park.
With the North East club still attracting a plethora of negative headlines following Joe Kinnear's appointment as director of football and the resignation of managing director Derek Llambias earlier this week, Newcastle appear to have walked straight into yet another PR disaster by riling Shearer.
After club officials claimed the former England striker was fully aware of their plan to re-name the bar at the Gallowgate End of the stadium 'Nine' to recognise the club's most famous shirt number, the club's former striker and manager has insisted he had no input into the plans.
"There was no consultation, I was simply informed by email of their decision to change the name," states Shearer in The Sun. "It was not a question of me agreeing or disagreeing.
"It is their ground and it is up to the owners what they do with it. It won't stop me from buying my season tickets and supporting the team."
Newcastle's finance director John Irving had earlier insisted on the club's official website that Shearer was fully aware of the plans to re-brand the bar, in a statement that has now been contradicted by the club's all-time leading scorer.
"Shearer's Bar was immensely popular when it was first launched in 2004, but its popularity has dwindled over the years as this part of Newcastle has developed and new bars have opened around it," stated Irving.
"In transforming the site and opening the bar up to a wider range of visitors, it was important that a new name remained in keeping with the club's history and heritage, and Nine is certainly faithful to that.
"We have liaised directly with Alan to keep him abreast of the plans, which he has been appreciative of, and we are looking forward to launching Nine next month."
The bar will open with an event in support of Shearer's charity for disabled children, with Shearer adding "I appreciate that gesture."
With the dust finally beginning to settle on Kinnear's controversial return to the club, reports in Thursday's newspapers suggest respected chief scout Graham Carr is the latest high profile staff member to be considering their position at the club.
Manager Alan Pardew has declined the chance to comment further for the time being as he is currently enjoying a family holiday in Spain, but he has still yet to publicly endorse the appointment of Kinnear as his new boss.