Time for Newcastle to step up to the mark for survival - Carver
JOHN CARVER has left his relegation-threatened players in little doubt they are drinking in the last-chance saloon.
The Magpies find themselves in severe danger of slipping into the Sky Bet Championship if they cannot beat West Ham in the final Barclays Premier League game of the season at St James' Park on Sunday. Their plight is due largely to a dreadful run of form which has seen them take just a single point from the last 30 on offer, and they are without a win since February 28.
But if 18th-placed Hull manage to beat Manchester United at the KC Stadium in their last fixture, Newcastle will themselves have to take three points if they are to avoid the drop.
Carver said: "There are no second chances now. This is the last game, it's the cup final we've been talking about. We all know what we have to do and we all take responsibility.
"It's not about me taking the blame or (owner) Mike (Ashley) and (managing director) Lee (Charnley), we all take responsibility. We're in this situation, we've got to deal with it. I feel like we've got to win. If we do that, we take care of our own business."
Under-fire Ashley has been conspicuous by his absence in recent weeks and his presence at St James' this weekend would provide a focus for fans seething with discontent at a season which has been allowed to spiral out of control. However, Carver, the man appointed as Alan Pardew's replacement until the end of the season back in January, is confident he retains the sportswear magnate's support.
He said: "It wouldn't bother me at all if he came. But if he doesn't come, I'm sure he will phone me beforehand, and if he does come, I'm sure he'll come and see me before the game.
"But I really don't know what his plans are. I can't decide what Mike's going to do, all I can decide is what we're going to do on Sunday."
Speculation over Derby boss Steve McClaren's future on Thursday evening led to fresh links between Newcastle and the former England manager.
However, it is understood the Magpies have not made another approach for McClaren, who has twice turned down the opportunity to replace Pardew, the first time with the Rams flying high in the Championship in January, and the second just weeks ago after they missed out on the play-offs.