Alan Pardew has claimed that this season is his finest as a manager, when combining the results he has gained at both Newcastle and Crystal Palace.
The former Newcastle boss claims that he achieved great things at St. James’ Park and ‘maybe they are fogotten too quickly’.
When talking about dealing with the pressure, Pardew compares it to what both Rafa Benitez and Brendan Rodgers have faced at Liverpool.
Speaking to ESPN, Alan Pardew:
How do you rate your season with both Newcastle and Palace?
‘I think it is my best season as a manager. I say that because I’ve had two such different challenges over the course of this campaign. At Newcastle, I had a team at the bottom of the table with a crowd that was very angry at what had gone on at the club for a period of time. I suspect it will be difficult for me to top this season in the future.’
What emotions will you feel if Newcastle are relegated from the Premier League on Sunday?
‘I want them to stay up, of course I do. They are my players, my staff, a club that means a lot to me and always will. I hope they get the win they need and then they won’t have to worry about any other result.’
Does it frustrate you that your five years at Newcastle are remembered by some for the wrong reasons?
‘Amid all the negativity at Newcastle, we achieved some great things. Finishing fifth in the Premier League with a great team was a fine effort and we also got to the quarterfinals of the Europa League and nearly got past a Benfica side that went to the final. They were great days, great nights at St James’ Park and I remember them with affection. Maybe they are forgotten too quickly.’
You still appear to have great affection for Newcastle despite the campaign by fans to get you out of the club. Is that fair to say?
‘I didn’t listen to half of the criticism I received. I just didn’t let it enter my brain. It affects people around me, but it was my job to see through that. When you are in charge of a top club, where expectations are high you have to deal with that. I look at Rafa Benitez in his time at Liverpool, he had difficult periods and the same goes for Brendan Rodgers in the same job now. These difficult periods come and you have to accept that. I did as well as I could at Newcastle.’