Magpies turn to Shearer
St James' Park legend to replace Kinnear in battle against relegation
By Peter Fraser. Last Updated: 02/04/09 11:52am
Shearer: Newcastle legend
Alan Shearer is to take over as Newcastle United manager for the remaining eight games of the season as the club battle to avoid Premier League relegation.
Sky Sports News revealed the sensational story late on Tuesday night and Shearer is now expected to be officially unveiled on Thursday morning.
Former boss Joe Kinnear - who is held in high regard by owner Mike Ashley - is currently recovering from triple heart bypass surgery and he was due to meet cardiologists next Monday to determine if he was fit to return to the touchline.
However, it has been suggested that he could now move to a role upstairs, possibly as director of football, as St James' Park legend Shearer, the top scorer in the club's history, takes charge.
The 18th-placed Magpies are facing a fierce fight against relegation and are desperate for a morale boost, which Shearer's appointment will inevitably provide, in their bid to escape the drop zone.
Former England captain Shearer has been keen to enter into management and he was linked with the Tyneside hot-seat when ex-chief Kevin Keegan dramatically quit his second spell earlier in the campaign.
Newcastle, who were under the caretaker control of Kinnear's assistant Chris Hughton, face an unenviable run-in, and it is thought their fixture list provides the toughest test of all the teams attempting to survive in the top flight.
Shearer's first game will be Saturday's home meeting with high-flying Chelsea, before matches against Stoke, Tottenham, Portsmouth, Liverpool, North-East rivals Middlesbrough, Fulham and Aston Villa.