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Page last updated at 10:55 GMT, Sunday, 28 September 2008 11:55 UK

Kinnear reign hindered by old ban

Joe Kinnear
Kinnear, who suffered a heart attack in 1999, says he 'feels great'

Newcastle's interim manager Joe Kinnear will have to wait until mid-October before he can sit in the dugout due to an old touchline ban he must serve.

Out of work for four years, Kinnear was banned in 2004 for mocking a referee when he was Nottingham Forest boss.

Saturday's 2-1 loss to Blackburn counts as part of the ban, though Kinnear will not officially take charge of Newcastle team until Monday.

His two-match punishment expires ahead of Man City's visit on 20 October.

Kinnear will miss the trip to Everton on Sunday, 5 October, and the international break means the club do not play again until they host Mark Hughes' men.

Kinnear was given the ban in November 2004 for mocking referee Clive Penton after Nottingham Forest side lost to Gillingham.

The punishment was given after he left Forest and he has only now returned to management with the Magpies.

"I got two matches for calling one of the referees 'Coco the Clown'," said Kinnear. "I asked the referee what he did in his spare time, and that was it."

Had the loss to Blackburn not been included as part of the ban, Kinnear would have faced an even longer wait before returning to the touchline.

Shearer dismisses Magpies rumours

But the Football Association has clarified that the Blackburn game does count towards the punishment.

"Yesterday counted as the first one and Newcastle's next game at Everton will be the second of the two," an FA spokesman said on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Kinnear has insisted he is "not part of the Cockney mafia" as he arrived on Tyneside to take temporary charge of Newcastle.

Fan protests against current Newcastle owner Mike Ashley and director of football Wise have concentrated on their London connections.

And Kinnear, who played for Spurs and managed Wimbledon, has also endured jibes over his London background.

"They forget I was born in Ireland and played for Ireland all my life," said the Dublin-born Kinnear.

"I feel great, I am in good shape, and I have got a lot to prove," he added.

The other concern for supporters has been the health of their new manager, but Kinnear - who made his name at Wimbledon until he suffered a heart attack in 1999 - played down any worries.

"I have had numerous interviews at various football clubs, and most of the issues have been talks for hours about my health," he said.

"There is nothing wrong with my mind, my tactical ability, my assessments, so I am fine. It is just getting the opportunity to prove it."

Kinnear targets 18 points from six games

Kinnear has not managed a club since resigning at Nottingham Forest in December 2004, but insisted he could make headway with a rudderless Newcastle side as fans, players and staff await developments off the pitch.

"This is a fantastic opportunity. I can't believe the other candidates turned it down," he said.

"Irrespective of what condition (the club) are in, I'm here to improve them.

"I have come here to do the best I possibly can because I know it's a short contract, I know what is stored around the corner for me, if you like.

"If I can come and do a really good job here, who knows where it is going to lead for me?"

see also
Newcastle 1-2 Blackburn
27 Sep 08 |  Premier League
Magpies name Kinnear interim boss
26 Sep 08 |  Newcastle
Harford backs Kinnear to succeed
26 Sep 08 |  Newcastle
Venables rejects Newcastle offer
26 Sep 08 |  Newcastle
Nigerians prepare Newcastle offer
26 Sep 08 |  Newcastle

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