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Last Updated: Saturday, 12 January 2008, 10:12 GMT
Redknapp rejects Newcastle offer
Harry Redknapp
Redknapp was the bookmakers' favourite to take over at Newcastle
Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp has turned down an offer to succeed Sam Allardyce as Newcastle manager.

Redknapp held talks with Newcastle chairman Chris Mort but after mulling over the move, decided to stay put.

"It was a terrific opportunity but I had no intentions of wanting to leave," said the Pompey boss.

Mort insisted that Redknapp was only one of a number of candidates the club has spoken to, and that they will not be rushed into an appointment.

"In the process of appointing a new manager we have identified and spoken to a number of candidates," said Magpies chairman Chris Mort.

"This is a very important appointment - our first since taking control of the club - and we will take as long as required to make sure we bring in the right person.

"That person will be someone we believe will be able to deliver successful results and performances to accompany that."

Redknapp, 60, was immediately installed as favourite to take over at St James' Park after Allardyce was dismissed on Wednesday after just eight months.

He has put this squad together and he wants to take them to another level

Peter Storrie - Portsmouth chief executive

Despite denials from Portsmouth that any contact had been made by Newcastle, the club reportedly gave Redknapp until lunchtime on Saturday to make a decision.

But the former Bournemouth, West Ham and Southampton manager felt he could not walk away from Fratton Park.

"I have a job to do to take this club forward, and to walk away would not have been the right thing to do," said Redknapp.

"I'm happy here, people treat me well and I felt a loyalty to the club and the fans."

Pompey chief executive Peter Storrie admitted he was "very worried" Redknapp would leave.

"It has been 50/50 for a few days," Storrie told BBC 5 Live.

"Last night I thought it might be going slightly the other way, but we met up this morning and with a bit of verbal persuasion he has decided to stay."

606: DEBATE
FF
Storrie indicated Redknapp felt he still had unfinished business at Fratton Park.

"This wasn't about finance, this was about ambition," he said.

"We have come such a long way over the past two years and if we can repeat that over the next two years then there is still a long way to go.

"He is loved by the fans and has put this squad together and he wants to take them to another level."

LAST SIX MAGPIES MANAGERS
Kenny Dalglish
Jan 1997-Aug 1998
Ruud Gullit
Aug 1998-Aug 1999
Sir Bobby Robson
Sep 1999-Aug 2004
Graeme Souness
Sep 2004-Feb 2006
Glenn Roeder
Feb 2006-May 2007
Sam Allardyce
May 2007-Jan 2008
Redknapp will now take his side to Sunderland on Sunday while Newcastle are left to assess other managerial suitors.

Blackburn boss Mark Hughes was one of those linked with the job but he has distanced himself from the post, despite being installed as the new bookmakers favourite.

Other names include former Magpies striker Alan Shearer, Martin Jol, Jose Mourinho, Italy's World Cup-winning coach Marcello Lippi and former England boss Steve McClaren.

BBC sources close to the 37-year-old Shearer, though, say he is extremely unlikely to take the role as he is happy with his pundit work on Match of the Day.

Magpies assistant boss Nigel Pearson has been put in temporary charge for Saturday's match against defending champions Manchester United.

SEE ALSO
The big issues at Newcastle
12 Jan 08 |  Newcastle United
Allardyce vows to resume career
10 Jan 08 |  Newcastle United
Allardyce reign ends at Newcastle
09 Jan 08 |  Newcastle United
Allardyce in photos
09 Jan 08 |  Football
Big Sam's wrong turn
09 Jan 08 |  Newcastle United
Debate: Newcastle fan's view
09 Jan 08 |  Football
Comment: Magpies madness
09 Jan 08 |  Newcastle United
Shearer ends career on high note
11 May 06 |  Newcastle United


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