Chris Hughton must be replaced, reports of Paul Gascoigne trying to sweet-talk Mike Ashley into reversing his decision notwithstanding.
So who will it be? Internal replacements are always the first thought, but none of the internal candidates for Calderwood's job have the "experience" Ashley cited in his press release. Some of the names being bandied about (Sachin Nakrani, The Guardian) are Alan Pardew (controversial ex-Southampton manager), Alan Curbishley (ex-West Ham boss with a history of clashing with ownership), Lee Clark (former Toon midfielder and current boss of League One side Huddersfield Town), Martin O'Neill (you may remember him for quitting on Aston Villa just before the season), Alan Shearer (his name will always be brought up, but I don't see it happening), and Joe Kinnear (that would just be spitting in the face of the Toon Army, wouldn't it?). The Journal also has Paul Gascoigne at 100/1 odds. That would be just what this team needs, right? Our star striker was recently placed on house arrest for assault, so why not bring in a guy with two pending DUI charges? I'm tempted to wager on those odds, because it would be just like Mike Ashley to make such a move.
Kidding aside, I'm not in love with any of these options, but if we can't have Hughton back, my early preference is for O'Neill or Clark.