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By ESPN Staff
Feb 1, 2008

Wise: Keegan gets the final say on transfers

Dennis Wise has insisted Kevin Keegan has nothing to fear from him as the pair plot the way forward at Newcastle. The 41-year-old's arrival at St James' Park this week as the club's executive director (football) started tongues wagging as some commentators suggested the former Leeds boss would eventually come to represent a vulture circling over his one-time England boss. However, speaking for the first time about his appointment, Wise was adamant that Keegan would remain very much the man in charge. He said: 'A lot of people have got a little mixed up with the reason I am here, and we need to straighten that out quite quickly. 'I am not here to be involved in the first team; I am not here to manage. 'I am here to help Kevin as much as possible with bringing young players through, and also recommending certain players to him. 'He will say yes or no. He has the final word. No-one else. 'I am not going to do things like bring players in behind his back. I am not into that. 'Everything that happens will be run past him and he will say yes or no.' Wise, along with fellow newcomers Tony Jimenez, vice-president (player recruitment), and Jeff Vetere, technical co-ordinator, met Keegan on Tyneside yesterday as they discussed the way forward. Keegan, who will send his side out against derby rivals Middlesbrough on Sunday still looking for his first victory, said he was happy with the outcome. 'It was a very good meeting. Although it shocked a lot of people, the announcement, I knew what was coming,' he said. 'I have been fully informed and completely in favour of it. 'It's something that needed to be put in place at this football club. Nobody from outside, and certainly the fans, should look on it as anything other than a good thing.' Much has been made of the potential for conflict between the famously passionate Keegan and the former Leeds boss. However, the 56-year-old has no qualms about working with Wise, and warned people not to be deceived by appearances. He said: 'Dennis knows the game. Sometimes, the person you see on the football pitch and the person off it are totally different. 'Most of the guys in my day who would frighten you to death on a football pitch were so meek and mild off it, it was frightening. 'Too many people think the guy they see on the pitch is that guy. A lot of players change character when they go on to the pitch. 'As far as Dennis' appointment at this club, it is a major plus. It's an interesting role for him, something really to get his teeth into. 'If we can get it right at the top end of this club and they can start to make the foundations better and we meet somewhere in the middle, it would be fantastic for this club.' The most pressing concern this weekend, however, is to end a run of seven Premier League games without a victory stretching back to December 15, and a league goal drought which extends to 395 minutes. Keegan will not have returning African Nations Cup players Habib Beye and Abdoulaye Faye back in time for the derby, but will have Mark Viduka and Jose Enrique available after injury and Emre following the completion of his three-match ban. The manager had hoped to add to his squad during the transfer window which closed yesterday, but was not unduly concerned that no major signings were made. He said: 'The one thing I was determined not to do was just fetch people in for the sake of it. 'I said right at the beginning, if we couldn't get quality players in here, I wouldn't park players here on a short-term basis.'