WATCH - Why Steve McClaren took Newcastle job

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
McClaren is the new Newcastle boss (pic
McClaren is the new Newcastle boss (pic

Steve McClaren has expressed his conviction that Newcastle United are 'ready to lift off' after he was appointed as head coach at the club and also handed a position on the club's board of directors.

The former England manager was sacked by Derby last month, but he has long been tipped to take over as Newcastle boss and the appointment was confirmed on Wednesday night with this statement:

McClaren's arrival has been greeted by a mixed reaction from Newcastle fans, but the new man at the helm is keen to promote the idea that he will bring the good times back to the troubled North East club.

"St. James' Park is like a cathedral on a Saturday afternoon, a symbol for the city, and I am excited to be given this opportunity. I know how important Newcastle United is to the city and the region," said McClaren.

"The supporters are some of the most loyal, passionate and devoted in the world. Despite everything, they maintain their faith. We owe it to them to do everything we can to reward them with success.

"There's a lot of work to do but the club has made it clear about wanting success, and I would not have come here if I didn't believe they were serious. This club has waited far too long to win a trophy. That's one of my primary objectives here.

"I've already won trophies as a manager and a club the size of Newcastle United should be winning cups and finishing in the top eight in the Premier League."

He also offered up his views in this video clips:

McClaren's appointment came on a day when it was confirmed that much-maligned Newcastle owner Mike Ashley has stepped downfrom his role as a director at the club, but he has no intention of selling his stake in the club any time soon.

Intriguingly, new boss McClaren, chief scout Graham Carr and club ambassador Bob Moncur were appointed to the Board, joining managing director Lee Charnley.

It means that Newcastle have become the only club in the Premier League to have its head coach on its board of Directors.