Newcastle United news: McClaren lifts the lid on relationship with Ashley, Cisse fired up and West Ham preview

Newcastle United manager Steve McClaren
Newcastle United manager Steve McClaren

Steve McClaren has lifted the lid on his relationship with Mike Ashley ahead of tonight’s Premier League match at West Ham United.

The Toon boss has revealed the pair have ony met ONCE since he took charge in the summer.

Asked if he had a regular dialogue with Ashley, McClaren said: “I met him once before the Gladbach game.

“We had 10 minute’s chit-chat, mostly about Sports Direct and how it makes so much money and how he’s turned this club around in eight years to be in profit and for us to spent £50million and not sell our best player in the last two days of the window.

Read the full story here:

McClaren is hoping for his maiden win in the top flight this season at West Ham tonight.

One of his players who is right up for the challenge is Papiss Cisse - who insists he is not sulking after being axed recently.

“I am happy with his reaction to not playing,” said McClaren.

“He was very unlucky not to (play). We just wanted to look at Mitro and one or two other things.”

Read the full build-up to tonight’s match here:

Tonight’s match (KO 8pm) will be refereed by Anthony Taylor.

In total during the 2015/16 campaign, Taylor has refereed four fixtures across the Barclays Premier League and Community Shield, handing out 15 yellow cards and one red.