Alan Pardew is a great talker, just like Sir Bobby and Kevin Keegan before him.

I find him interesting to listen to and I know on this website there have been plenty mentions of pubs falling silent after matches to hear what he has to say.

However, sometimes the more you have to say can at times come back to haunt you, or trip you up.

I really like Alan Pardew but looking at his comments over a period of time they just don’t add up. This isn’t an anti-Pardew article, more of a look at how I believe he is managinng a very difficult situation.

Yesterday, Alan Pardew had this to say;

“I felt at the start of the year when we looked at the centre-half situation, that if we brought someone in they would stand in the way of two players with great futures at the club.

You have to look at a football club as a whole and there has to be a route to the first team otherwise you’re not going to progress as a club. I’ve opened up the route, especially with the Europa League, and told them ‘come and take your chance’.”

Can’t really disagree with there needing to be a route to the first team for younger players and all of that but this is what the manager had to say in May;

“Set plays have been really disappointing this year and I am contemplating bringing in someone because we don’t have a dominant header of the ball. On the scouting front we are looking at a centre-half who can come and score us eight goals next season.

We are trying to bring another player to the club who is close to Yohan Cabaye. That is another little connection and a bit of a clue for you.”

The quotes speak for themselves but anybody who actually heard the interview on Radio Newcastle that the quotes are from, would agree that he spoke very passionately and was adamant that players would be signed, including this dominant goalscoring centre-back. While the Cabaye reference was clearly Mathieu Debuchy which our French midfielder confirmed later.

So what are we to make of it? Well as I said, Alan Pardew is I believe, trying to manage a really difficult situation and I think doing his best by the team and fans, making the best of a less than ideal hand that he’s been dealt.

The manager says now that he always wanted to keep this route open for the kids rather than going for established players, unfortunately it smacks of simply trying to now rewrite history. A number of times over the summer he was at pains to say that he’d done his part on various potential transfers and now it was up to the club hierarchy as to whether they could close the deal(s).

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I think Pardew must be gutted at the lack of squad strengthening but for whatever reasons wants to put on a brave face and present a positive image for the benefit of both players and fans. I do believe, and would like to believe, that his motives are genuine.

Why didn’t Newcastle make more signings? There seems to be little doubt that it was down to not wanting to pay the transfer fees demanded for the likes of Debuchy and others. If one of our elite players had gone for £15m or so would that then have pushed incoming transfers through? Was it an expectation that somebody would end up going and that money available for Pardew’s targets? That would certainly be my best guess.

Before I get the odd idiot saying I shouldn’t slag off club/players/managers/could have been another Portsmouth etc etc, talking about NUFC’s failures in certain areas doesn’t then stop you giving 100% support to whoever the eleven players in black & white are on any give Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday…

Is Alan Pardew’s approach the right one, if you believe he has been let down on the transfer front? Would you rather that he went up against the club hierarchy as Kevin Keegan did when he felt he wasn’t been backed by John Hall?

I think Keegan was brilliant for Newcastle and if he hadn’t done what he did at the time in forcing the likes of John Hall to supply the players he’d promised to save the club, then I dread to think where we might be now.

Back to the present, Is Alan Pardew’s strategy right for himself and Newcastle United at this moment in time? Only time will tell.

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  • John

    Pardew would have to be very diplomatic in public after getting badly burned with the Andy Carrol comments before he was sold. We all know who makes the final decisions. I would really love to hear what Pardew says to Llambias and Ashley in private when he is trying to convince them to come up with the money.

  • Munich Mag

    Good thought provoking article Dean.
    For varying reasons, at the end of the day Kevin Keegan fell on his own sword and left the club.. Pardew is never going to do that, a prime reason being his own self preservation, and while he is in fact still building his own reputation amongst the EPL management upper eschelons. That’s why this season is so important for the club AND Pardew, was this a one season blip…?

    That Pardew often speaks with forked tongue and gives out conflicting messages will always alienate him with a portion of toon fans, and rightly so imo. I only hope he can keep the fans on his side, because once the dip in form arrives the doom merchants will be out in force, and he will have to bear the brunt of the failure to reinvest in the club during the close season.