The continuing troubles faced by English Premiership soccer club Newcastle United are the subject of a special betting market being offered by Isle of Man-licensed sportsbook PaddyPower.com.
The Dublin-based site is currently offering its ‘Next Friend Of Dennis Wise To Be Employed By The Club’ special, with Uruguayan Gustavo ‘Gus’ Poyet, current Assistant Manager for Tottenham Hotspur, favourite at odds of 5/4.
A former player for Chelsea, Wimbledon and Leicester City, 41-year-old Wise is currently Executive Director of Football for Newcastle. Many fans blame Wise alongside Chairman Mike Ashley for the resignation last month of popular boss Kevin Keegan followed by the appointment of past Wimbledon boss Joe Kinnear as Manager on an interim basis. However, uncertainty abounds about the future of the club as Ashley publicly searches for a new owner after buying the team only last year.
Forty-year-old Poyet played with Wise at Chelsea before helping him to manage lower league sides Swindon Town and Leeds United. Many in the game see him as a potential future manager although he has publicly denied any interest in the Newcastle job.
Ex-Chelsea player Gianluca Vialli is second at odds of 11/4 even though the Italian has been out of football since being sacked as boss of Watford in 2002. Third in the running is former Wimbledon Manager Dave Bassett at odds of 9/2 alongside Lawrie Sanchez, a past team mate of Wise’s and ex-chief of Fulham and Wycombe Wanderers.
Wimbledon great Robbie Earle is listed at odds of 10/1 alongside Chelsea legend Marcel Desailly while ex-team mates Frank Leboeuf, Roberto Di Matteo, Vinny Jones and John Fashanu are at 33/1.
Those looking for a long shot could go with 50/1 for Callum Davidson, the former Leicester City player who suffered a fractured jaw in 2002 following an ‘incident’ with Wise during a pre-season tour of Finland in 2002.