Have Newcastle Fans Left It Too Late With Alan Pardew?
For a club with fans such as Newcastle’s, Alan Pardew has been getting a surprisingly easy ride by a majority of supporters for far too long.
Cast your minds back twelve years ago and many fans were supporting sacking Sir Bobby Robson, despite him continuously qualifying for European Football and turning us back into a top side after the diabolical reigns of Daglish and Gullit.
Yet now we sit with Alan Pardew, a manager who has broken most of our records for just how bad a manager can be. That is until now, as it looks like the Toon Army has finally decided enough is enough and the writing is on the wall, but has the damage already been done?
The days of The Entertainers has been completely destroyed. Instead drab, grey football where defence is apparently everything, is now the name of the game and good god is it boring! The worst thing is that it doesn’t work at all. A defensive side wouldn’t let in one hundred and twenty seven goals over two seasons.
Jose Mourinho is an example of a manager who has the art of defence perfected. Tight, rigid and utterly impenetrable by even the world’s best players, it may not be exciting but it is tactical genius. Compare this to Pardew, whose sole tactic is to hoof the ball to the striker and hope he scores, or as of recently only pass either backwards or sidewards five yards in the Newcastle half. It is obvious right now that Pardew has finally been caught out. Without a Ba or Remy type player to provide the goals, we have never looked so impotent in the opposition’s half.
“Ben Arfa is a luxury we can’t afford. He’d be good at Man City but not for us.”
These words were said completely sincerely by a fellow fan who up until now, had always been pretty sound when it came to the club. It was confusing to say the least to hear that a player could fit into the league winning side but not ours, though then again that has been the devastating effect of Pardew’s time here.
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No longer do our fans dream of glory but instead we’re happy to settle for less. It was Al Pacino in ‘Scent of a Woman’ who said that there was no cure for an amputated spirit and at the moment it looks like an axe has been taken to the Toon Army.
Fans argue all the time and we are often told by the manager not to get too excited, lest the players do too and start trying to win matches. It takes some doing but Pardew has very nearly destroyed the spirit of the fans during his time here, with his dull negative tactics. Players are now too good to play for us according to fans. Could you imagine that being said under Keegan or Robson?
Even worse, is the damage that Pardew and his coaching staff have done to our youth. Bigimirana stands as an example of a bright young talent that has gone nowhere under Pardew. Bigi was superb in his first season, that goal against Wigan pegging him down as the future of Newcastle’s central midfield, yet he’s now been resigned to the reserves for no discernable reason. In fact, if you’re not a Ba or Remy type e.g. a striker able to create and score their own opportunities, you are guaranteed to stagnate and regress under the tutelage of Pardew.
The tide has of course now turned against Pardew after a diabolical transfer window. Comments on forums are decidedly against him and a new site, sackpardew.com shows just how widespread discontent is, but is it too late? Even if he is sacked, our new manager faces a hell of a job.
An entire team will need to be trained as how to play football beyond hoofball and passing backward.
Hot prospects will need to be quickly developed with only a limited time left to achieve their potential and the manager will have to deal with a paper thin squad, including several ageing players, of whom many just aren’t cut out for this level. #
Most importantly though, they will need to bring hope back to Newcastle, something a large portion of fans haven’t had for a long time.
It’s just a question of whether the disastrous four years we have endured hasn’t rendered all of this too late to achieve. If so we will only have ourselves to blame for not speaking out sooner.
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