Alan Pardew – From ‘Yes’ Man to Best Man

When Alan Pardew was appointed as Chris Hughton’s replacement, eyebrows were raised. The majority of supporters saw him as little more than Chairman Mike Ashley’s puppet, a ‘yes’ man, whilst Ashley and MD Derek Llambias continued their reign of the club amidst mass outcry from Newcastle United’s fan base.

Yet 17 months later he has transformed the hopes of Tyneside and taken the club back into Europe, and today it was announced that he has deservedly been named as Barclay’s Manager of the Season – undoubtedly his greatest achievement as a manager.

With 19 wins, 8 draws and 10 defeats, Pardew has taken a team who just two years ago were winning promotion from the Championship to fighting for a Champions League place against some of the nation’s best teams.

Chris Hughton was sacked following a poor run of results ahead of the Christmas period and many, admittedly myself included, questioned Pardew’s appointment. But his track record as a manager and player in the lower leagues was impressive – winning the Second Division with Crystal Palace in 1989, taking Reading to second in the same league in 2002, plus earning West Ham promotion and an FA Cup Final appearance in 2005 and 2006.

After finishing 12th in the Premier League, after a final day collapse against West Brom which cost the Magpies 10th place, fans were ready to give Pardew the benefit of the doubt ahead of his first full season in charge – that is until the club lost three of its most important players.

After Andy Carroll was sold to Liverpool in January, and a replacement yet to be found, many people including players were questioning the ambition of the manager and the club.

Joey Barton and Jose Enrique took to Twitter to show their views and were promptly shown the exit door, while Kevin Nolan was sold to West Ham after contract talks broke down at Newcastle.

However, Pardew’s transfer policy in the Summer included a number of shrewd signings including Yohan Cabaye, Demba Ba and Davide Santon to name a few.

The aforementioned have now turned into first names on the team sheet and Ba has scored 16 goals in a season which saw Newcastle play their first 11 games without defeat – eventually falling to Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium in November – the club’s best start to a season for 17 years.

The Magpies hadn’t dropped below eighth place in the league this season, and January signing Papiss Demba Cisse can also be thanked for their run of form which has seen them take Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur to the final day of the league in the battle for Champion’s League football.

Cisse’s incredible run of 13 goals in 13 games also coincided with Newcastle on their best winning run since 1996 – six consecutive victories.

It’s difficult not to wax lyrical about a manager who has turned the fortunes of this club around. We were seen as the laughing stock of the Premier League following a number of failed signings, relegation, Dennis Wise and Joe Kinnear.

The club’s run of form has even seen fans starting to back Mike Ashley for the first time since he took over as owner in 2007.

No matter the result on Sunday, and which European competition Newcastle play in, fans can once again take pride in the club knowing that they have the Best Manager in the League at the helm.

 

10 comments
Andgeo
Andgeo

Every supporter should be boycotting sports direct too. I find it unbelievable that supporters still shop there. You even see people walking around with sports direct bags for life, as if the fat scum doesn't get enough free advertising! Each and everyone of them are total idiots. Boycott mike ashley!

jimblag
jimblag

@Andgeo I do, desperately wanted a ball yesterday but i couldn't allow myself!

gavinv1972
gavinv1972

there is one glaring omission from this and every other protest piece. Voting with your feet will not impact Mike Ashley, unfortunately the only impact is when it becomes financial which means 20,000 cancelled season tickets, then it becomes impacting. We all know however that ultimately this will be to the detriment of the team as he will simply sell our brightest prospects to balance the books. Those Trips to Aspers domnt pay for themselves you know

Andgeo
Andgeo

I worry that the TV money is so substantial and the free advertising for his tat brand is so easy for him that even if we had an empty stadium he would just roll out more Sports direct banners on the empty seats. The fat scum is completely shameless in his quest to become the richest man in the country. Action is needed to get rid of him, sitting by passively, like total morons is allowing him to take more and more of the soul out of our club. We need to get rid of him ASAP, as when he goes he will leave nothing behind. Sooner the better. All supporters need to boycott, ignorance or naivety is no excuse, we need to fight back now.

radgepacket
radgepacket

@Andgeo I also believe the season ticket money is a mere irrelevance to him, he doesn't give a monkeys. The TV money has ensured that season-ticket money isn't even a big deal (perhaps 30 million a season? 50k x 600 quid). He could afford to let people in for nowt if he wanted to..The blokes estimated worth in 2014 was 3.75 billion..3750 million pound..he could give the club away and not even bat an eyelid. I honestly reckon he enjoys pissing us off.

essexMag
essexMag

It is hard to turn our backs on the club, history and tradition etc. It tears most of us apart to even think about not seeing them play. BUT,( here is the common sense bit)....i once had a crap meal from a restaurant. I gave them benefit of doubt and returned. Again i was served rubbish. Would i keep going to that restaurant to be served crap nearly 20 times a year?

Andgeo
Andgeo

Spot on!!!are people so useless they can not find anything better to do on a weekend?? Why watch a second rate team, that is seriously underfunded, completely demotivated, led by a completely delusional big time charley and pay for the privilege. Fools!!! Can you not find anything better to do with your lives until fatty is gone ?? Losers!

jimblag
jimblag

@Andgeo second rate team can be forgiven, it's aiming to have a second rate team that is jarring

IainT0842
IainT0842

I don't like him but he's dead right. I stayed away on Sunday and feel proud to have done so. I will be staying away indefinitely as I know others intend to. I fear to many that was a one off protest vote though.