Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has insisted he has not had to seek reassurances from Mike Ashley about his position as manager, despite the Magpies’ poor start to the season.

Pardew did admit he had spoken to the Newcastle owner but only to talk about the performance Newcastle turned in as they were stuffed by Southampton last weekend.

Speaking in Thursday’s press conference ahead of the game against Hull City on Saturday, Pardew said:
“I had a long conversation with Mike Ashley, I never asked for reassurance – I signed a long deal for good or bad.”

Pardew has six years remaining on his eight-year contract signed in 2012 but Newcastle fans are preparing a huge protest at St James’ Park this weekend to try and force their owner to wield the axe and sack the former West Ham boss.

The Geordies have only scored three goals this season and are yet to win a match, on top of a poor end to the transfer window that seen Hatem Ben Arfa join Saturday’s opponents on loan.

“There’s nothing I can do to stop them protesting and don’t intend to. I hope the protest comes quickly and go quickly.

“I’m resigned to how the stadium will be. People take this as an ego trip. I’m trying to be professional in my job.

“I signed a contract to be manager for a long time. There have been scenarios when it’s been good for me and this isn’t. The standards on the pitch aren’t to the levels I’ve had at this club.”

Meanwhile, Pardew’s assistant manager John Carver has apologised for an altercation with a fan during the warm-up against Southampton.

“In the warm up, I was disappointed to see banners that could, in my opinion, distract the players and take focus away from the job in hand – namely winning the match.

“I went over to our fans to ask them to help us and requested that they take the banners down. I was met with abuse from one supporter and I regret that I responded inappropriately. I sincerely apologise for any offence caused by my reaction.”