JOHN Carver says he’s not been offered the Newcastle United job on a permanent basis – but he’s still adamant he has got what it takes to lead the club.
Carver’s team are in freefall after a six-game losing streak, with the Magpies braced for a five-game battle to stay in the Premier League.
Newcastle are in desperate need of three points when Swansea visit St James’s Park tomorrow.
The last few weeks of the campaign will be played out amid more protests from disillusioned supporters, some of whom boycotted last weekend’s home defeat to Tottenham.
Members of United’s Fans Forum this week wrote an open letter to owner Mike Ashley asking him to make a “statement of intent”, demanding to know how Newcastle’s hierarchy plan to revive the Tynesiders’ fortunes.
They also asked the club to clarify whether Carver is set to be appointed as head coach on a permanent basis.
Derby County head coach Steve McClaren is the front-runner for the post, but Carver remains a candidate.
While Carver has been involved in discussions about the Magpies’ summer transfer strategy and pre-season programme with managing director Lee Charnley and chief scout Graham Carr, he is adamant that he has not been given any assurances about his future.
Carver, however, does have five years left on his assistant manager’s contract.
Asked if he had been told he would be given the post on a full-time basis, Carver said: “Absolutely not. On the Gospel, I haven’t been told that.
“We have had discussions about ongoing issues at the club and I have regular meetings with Lee and Graham, at least once a week.
“I have not been given any assurances or been told what my situation is next season.
“What I have got is a five-year deal.”
Newcastle’s squad has been decimated by a series of injuries and suspensions, and Carver says the hierarchy “understands” the impact these have had on results over the past few months.
Asked if the next five games would have a bearing on his future, Carver added: “I don’t know.
“I think people understand the situation I’m in, and know what I’m trying to do.
“Only they (Newcastle’s board) know. But every time I get together with them they are positive – whether that’s to keep me going or they have someone else lined up, I don’t know.
“That doesn’t affect me – the future will take care of itself. I’m just concentrating on now.”
Carver does expect a quick decision on the club’s full-time head coach at the end of the season.
Asked if he expected a swift announcement, he said: “Definitely – that would be for everyone’s benefit. The fans, myself, everyone could enjoy their summer.
“I think it will be (sorted quickly), because don’t forget the window opens very soon after the season finishes.
“It has to be done and your recruitment has to be done in that period of time.”