Paul Kemsley insists his friendship with Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley remains as strong as ever.

The former Tottenham director recommended Harry Redknapp to Ashley and the Guardian says he is dismissive of speculation that the pair had fallen out after the club's humiliation over the Portsmouth boss.

"There is no way that after 25 years this could rock our relationship," he said.

Meanwhile Redknapp was somewhat bewildered that relocation to the north-east had become a prerequisite for the next manager at St James' Park when neither Ashley, nor the chairman, Chris Mort, nor the England striker Michael Owen is based in Newcastle.