Newcastle owner Mike Ashley placed the future firmly in the hands of manager Alan Pardew when he handed him a staggering eight-year contract.

Pardew, assistant John Carver, coach Steve Stone and goalkeeping coach Andy Woodman have all been given identical deals with chief scout Graham Carr having signed his own eight-year contract in June.

The announcement represents a huge vote of faith in Pardew and his staff with the 51-year-old having initially taken over from the sacked Chris Hughton in December 2010 on a five-year deal which few expected him to see out at the time.

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