"120% committed!" - Ex-Mourinho assistant not interested in becoming Newcastle manager

Middlesbrough FC Crest

Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka says he isn't interest in a move to Newcastle United.

After a week of speculation, Crystal Palace finally confirmed the appointment of Alan Pardew as their new manager today.

The 53-year-old makes the surprising move from Newcastle United back down to South London, where he will return to his former club Palace, who he played for during the late 80's and early 90's.

Pardew was far from a popular figure during his time at Newcastle, but there's a certain irony in the way that fan protests couldn't remove Pardew from the Newcastle dugout, but an offer from a team struggling in the Premier League has.

Regardless, owner Mike Ashley must now find a replacement for Pardew, with a whole host of names linked with becoming the latest Magpies boss.

From caretaker manager John Carver to Derby boss Steve McClaren and from German Thomas Tuchel to current Newcastle captain Fabricio Coloccini, it seems that virtually everyone is being touted for job.

Another link was to Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka, with the Spaniard impressing down the road at the Riverside Stadium.

Yet after he watched his side defeat Barnsley 2-0 in the FA Cup Third Round, Karanka says that he is totally focused on his job at Middlesbrough.

"It is a surprise to me," said Karanka on rumours of a move to Newcastle, and when asked if he was committed to his job at Middlesbrough, he replied; "120 per cent."

Karanka, 41, has his Boro side in fourth place in the Championship, just four points off an automatic promotion spot, and has currently won around 47% of his games in charge of the Teessiders.

A former assistant of Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid, it took some time for Karanka to build a winning side at Boro, but now he has his side firing on all cylinders, and will be linked with a host of Premier League jobs in the future - but isn't ready to make the move just yet.

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