In the first five games that Alan Pardew was in charge of the Newcastle club, he made a good start to his Newcastle management career with three good wins.
Alan Pardew – at Stevenage yesterday
And in those games it was really only at Tottenham that Newcastle didn’t play up to their usual high standards, although the side held the London side for the first half with a good defensive display.
And yes, against Manchester City, we conceded two terrible goals in the first 5 minutes or so, but after that we outplayed the mega-rich City side at St. James’ Park.
And with Steven Taylor back in the Newcastle line-up, his experience and that of Steve Harper back in goal seemed to steady the side, and in the 4th and 5th games we had clean sheets and two wins at Wigan and a 5-0 home win against woeful West Ham.
So things were looking good.
And then came the game yesterday at Stevenage – and the wheels came off.
Not only did Newcastle not play well – even though they didn’t play the youngsters like Chris Hughton always used to do in the Cup competitions – but they didn’t even put in the fight – that has been characteristic of the side since Chris Hughton took over in the summer of 2009.
Guts, glory and passion are also characteristic of some of Newcastle’s great FA Cup wins of the past.
Newcastle have won the FA Cup 6 times and have been beaten finalists 7 times.
Indeed if we had played the youngsters yesterday, at least the effort and fight would have been there for all to see – but instead Alan played the fringe players – the older ones – and they not only let themselves down badly – but they completely let the Newcastle United club down.
The headlines around the world about the FA Cup yesterday, are that Stevenage beat the famous Newcastle United.
Our players were outfought and outplayed by a 4th division side, and the better side – let’s change that just a little bit – the much better side – Stevenage – won quite easily on the day.
And as we said yesterday after the terrible shock – the result was a bad one – but what was unacceptable to Newcastle fans was that the display was even worse.
And where were all the guts and passion?
Nowhere to be seen is the simple answer – and that is completely unacceptable for any Newcastle United side.
This ranks alongside our home defeat against Hereford United back in 1972 as one of Newcatsle’s worst ever defeats in the long traditions of the FA Cup, that started way back in 1870.
And this was only Alan Pardew’s 6th game in charge of Newcastle United.
His comments to the BBC after the game tell us that he has no idea what a terrible defeat this is – at least as far as Newcastle fans are concerned.
Why is that?
Because he made one excuse after another for his players – they were tired (poor things) and we were under strength – and all that kind of garbage that we used to get from big Sam and the likes of Graeme Souness.
Alan Pardew has just had the worst defeat of his football management career – and the sad thing that should be very worrying to Alan Pardew – is that he doesn’t even know it.