John Carver and Steve Stone pay the price of Newcastle’s brush with relegation

Steve Stone, left, and John Carver are believed to have parted company with Newcastle United.
Steve Stone, left, and John Carver are believed to have parted company with Newcastle United.

John Carver and Steve Stone are reported to have lost their jobs with Newcastle United today.

Carver, 50, and Stone, 43, are believed to have paid the price for the Magpies’ relegation near-miss in the season just ended.

The assistant manager, who replaced Crystal Palace-bound Alan Pardew in January as acting manager, had hoped to make the job his on a permanent basis.

But after a dreadful second half of the campaign - during which Newcastle won just three league games and only secured their Premier League status on the final day - his hopes were dashed.

His task was made all the more difficult by injuries to key players and disciplinary problems.

Leading scorer Papiss Cisse was banned for seven of the last 10 games for spitting at Manchester United defender Jonny Evans - which left him struggling to field a competitive team at times.

Former England boss Steve McClaren is the overwhelming favourite to be appointed as Pardew’s permanent successor when he returns from holiday later this week.

Carver did enjoy the support of Magpies owner Mike Ashley and chief executive Lee Charnley at St James’s Park, and was involved in early planning for a summer recruitment drive.

But he will not be the man to benefit from whatever funds Ashley does release - and the sportswear tycoon has indicated they will be significant - as the club turn their attention elsewhere.

McClaren was contacted on two separate occasions during Carver’s brief reign, but opted to remain at Derby County.

However, he was sacked in the wake of a disappointing conclusion to the Rams’ Sky Bet Championship promotion campaign.

The departures of Carver and Stone would give McClaren the freedom to bring in his own backroom team.