ALAN Pardew was set to finally start work at Crystal Palace today – but without Andy Woodman.
Outgoing Newcastle United manager Pardew wants to take goalkeeping coach Woodman with him to Selhurst Park.
But Woodman remains at St James’s Park, where his 17-year-old son Freddie is a goalkeeper.
Newcastle are keen to keep Woodman – who worked with Pardew at West Ham United and Charlton Athletic – on Tyneside, and he prepared goalkeeper Jak Alnwick for yesterday’s 3-3 home draw against Burnley.
And Woodman’s situation has been one of the sticking points in talks over Pardew’s return to Palace, as United, already banking upwards of £2m in compensation, will want a further payment should Woodman follow him to Selhurst Park.
Woodman, 43, could even opt to stay at St James’s Park.
Pardew watched Palace’s goalless draw against Aston Villa at Villa Park yesterday from the stands.
The 53-year-old’s appointment was expected to be belatedly confirmed today.
Meanwhile, Carver, now the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Pardew at Newcastle, says he remains focused on the team, and not his own future.
Carver told of his “disappointment” after Burnley’s late equaliser at St James’s Park.
“The disappointment is nothing to do with me as an individual or my future – I’m disappointed because I’m also a fan inside,” he said.
“If I was sitting in the stand, I’d have been going to the pub after the game for a pint, and I’d have been feeling disappointed.
“It’s hard to enjoy something with that disappointment inside you.”
United captain Fabricio Coloccini, linked with the job early in the week, has publicly ruled himself out of the running.
“I am a football player now and want to play for a few years more,” said the 32-year-old. “I want to enjoy being on the pitch – it’s not for now.
“It is a difficult situation, but John Carver is with us. He has the experience to take the job.
“Of course it is difficult, but it has not affected the team. When you go on the field, you have to leave all the problems behind you.”