Reports continue to link Steve McClaren with a summer switch to Newcastle

Jack Kitson by Jack Kitson / 21 April 2015, 12:20

Steve McCalrenRumours linking Steve McClaren with a summer switch to Newcastle United simply refuse to die away, with The Daily Star reporting that the Derby County manager will make the move North, but only if he fails to lead the Rams to promotion up to the Premier League.

Newcastle are currently enduring a torrid time, both on and off the field. Supporters continue to vent their severe dislike and frustration towards Mike Ashley, whose contentious ownership paints the Toon in a very negative light. The situation hit a nadir on Sunday after thousands of fans boycotted the home defeat to Tottenham, resulting in a season-low crowd of 47,427; the club's worst since August 2013

Interim head coach, John Carver, already minimal chances of hanging onto the job past May took another hammer blow after the Magpies slumped to their sixth successive defeat on Sunday, a sorry streak which has equalled their top-flight losing record.

John Carver

The Toon have won only two of the 15 matches since the Geordie replaced Alan Pardew at the helm, subsequently raising genuine fears of relegation, with the club just seven points clear with five matches remaining.

Meanwhile, McClaren's Derby look set for another play-off battle, after Saturday's thrilling 4-4 thriller at Huddersfield ended the 5th-placed club's chances of finishing in the top-2. With just two games remaining the Midlands outfit should go on to secure a top-6 spot, although the drama could easily continue down to the final day.

Last season Derby and McClaren experienced heartbreak in the play-off Final, after QPR netted a last-gasp winner. Should the Rams falter in the play-offs on this occasion, the former England boss may decide that the time is right to make a move, with the 53-year-old priced at just 1/10 (Bet Victor) in the Next Newcastle Manager Market. If reports are to be believed Ashley will splash out lb2million in compensation to land his number one target, who only signed a new three-year deal last summer.

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