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London journalist winds Newcastle fans up again

7 years ago

Writing in the London Evening Standard, Patrick Barclay has had another go at Newcastle fans.

Back in October, the London based journalist took it upon himself to slag United supporters off for showing their unhappiness with Alan Pardew, Barclay going out of his way to stick up for Pardew and praise Mike Ashley for sticking with him.

Patrick Barclay Oct 2014

Pardew may have his flaws — the shoving of a linesman in 2012 was not pretty, and nor was the gentle nutting of Hull’s David Meyler eight months ago — but he can manage a football team and Newcastle owner Mike Ashley deserves credit for keeping him in charge.

Another reason for the fans to cheer up is the emergence of youngsters. It’s always refreshing, and the dart of pace that enabled 18-year-old Rolando Aarons to score early at the Etihad suggested he may have more in common with Raheem Sterling than a Jamaican birthplace.

Adam Armstrong, 17, also started, while the 22-year-old Sammy Ameobi will be keen to return to White Hart Lane, where he scored his first Premier League goal on Sunday. Newcastle’s summer buys were interesting too — all 25 or under. So it’s a squad built to last. With admirably durable manager.

Barclay is now loving it that Crystal Palace have gained 22 points from 11 matches under Alan Pardew, whilst Newcastle have accumulated only 9 since he left.

Patrick Barclay writing today:

The Newcastle fans who spent autumn evenings preparing “Pardew Out” placards wanted to transform a club’s fortunes.

And how effective the campaign proved. Not only did Alan Pardew eventually take the hint and leave; the fortunes of TWO clubs have been transformed.

When Pardew moved to Crystal Palace at the turn of the year, they were third bottom of the Premier League with 17 points and Newcastle in mid-table with 26. Palace have since taken 22 points and Newcastle nine.

Which suggests that, had he switched earlier, Palace might be savouring the joys of spring with an eye on Europe and Newcastle staring at the Championship. Even now it is the sort of swing that, if achieved by the Green Party next month, might put Natalie Bennett in 10 Downing Street.

Anyway, Pardew is where he should be. In the bits of his radio interview that were not considered so newsworthy, he stressed Palace’s vast potential for growth. He could turn them into — I was almost going to say — a Newcastle.

Newcastle’s big problem isn’t that Pardew left, it is that we have a unscrupulous unambitious (apart from making money) owner who is happy to write a season off once he thinks enough points are banked for Premier League safety.

Letting players go in January, signing nobody and not appointing a credible manager to replace Alan Pardew.

In the four matches before the day Pardew left (day of Everton match), Newcastle had lost four in a row and conceded 12 goals, scoring only 2, including a defeat by Sunderland for the fourth time in a row.

I won’t go into all of the other desperate runs and statistics that happened at Newcastle under Pardew, as you’ll know them off by heart.

Alan Pardew was part of the problem and not part of the solution at Newcastle United, whether he ends up achieving anything at Crystal Palace isn’t of any interest to us, though I’m sure Charlton and West Ham fans would join us in wondering just how quickly Palace fans will find out what management under Pardew is really like.

I’ll be interested to hear what Patrick Barclay has to say then, rather than an eleven match snapshot helped massively by being allowed to bring in half a dozen signings in January at Selhurst Park.


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