Newcastle Has Been Fantastic For Me – Alan Pardew

It’s not hard to see just how much Alan Pardew loves being manager of Newcastle United.

Ben Arfa – only 4 appearances this season – and one stupendous goal

It seems as though he has very quickly grasped what’s important to the fans at Newcastle, and now we’ll see this summer,  just how successful he can be in bringing in new players to the club.

Pardew has been reflecting on the season to Sky Sports News, and the fact Newcastle have probably exceeded expectations, and they have a chance to finish as high as 9th place, if they can beat WBA on Sunday at home, and the Bolton and Stoke results go our way.

And Alan is including former manager Chris Hughton in the plaudits, and rightly so, because in the first 16 league games Chris got Newcastle 19 points and into 11th place in the league.

A win against WBA on Sunday would certainly  put the icing on the cake and in all probability a top 10 finish and that’s got to look very good for a club that was on its knees a short two years ago, after being relegated.

Alan rated the performance of the team this season:

“Including Chris’ time as manager here, you would have to give it an eight.”

“In terms of the expectations and the amount of finance that was spent in the summer, the fact that we lost Hatem to a broken leg, that we sold Andy Carroll, yes, I would give it as high as that.”

And Alan believes Newcastle may have even exceeded expectations, as the experts were predicting a tough campaign for the Magpies.

But there again last season the so called experts predicted Newcastle would go down again, and the lads won an automatic promotion place by 32 points, from 3rd placed Nottingham Forest.

Some experts.

Alan was asked if the Newcastle team had exceeded expectations:

“Possibly. If you looked at our squad, you would have to say on paper, it didn’t look the strongest for the results we have had, and that’s a great thing.”

“But we need to carry that over into next year and hopefully be stronger.” “I can only talk from my personal fulfillment as a football manager at a great club, and it has been fantastic on that front.”

“I have really enjoyed it. People have been tremendous and the players and the squad and the staff here – I have got to be honest, I think we have pulled above our weight and long may that continue.”

Theres no doubt Alan Pardew will put in the long hours the summer to strengthen the Newcastle squad.

And with players like Hatem Ben Arfa and Dan Gosling available in pre-season (they made only 5 appearance between them this season), and hopefully Kevin Nolan, Joey Barton and Jose Enrique all electing staying on Tyneside by signing new contracts, Newcastle need only around four or five new good players coming into the club to have next season look very promising.

But the summer will be very important for Newcastle to add to their ranks.

Comments welcome.

59 comments so far

  • G

    May 18, 2011 at 9:39 AM

    Comment #1

    Well, I’ve never particularly rated AP as a manager, however, given that since he has come here, he has made us a hard team to beat, and on more than one occasion he has had us playing above our level, against some top opposition. I am a little sceptical about his appointment, however, now he will have a chance to show us what he is made of, shaping the squad his own way, in the transfer market. By now he should know exactly what each and every member of our squad is capable of, so he will know where we are weak, and hopefully who to bring in to resolve it. I expect us next season to be looking at a top 8 finish, which isn’t too unrealistic an expectation I feel, and should give us a realistic shot at a Euro competition after next season. Roll on the transfer window.

  • The Entertainers

    May 18, 2011 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #2

    More than a bit disappointed by his arrival, but as the seasons gone on he has started to win me over and has grabbed some cracking results, particulary against the bigger teams.

    Next season will be huge for Pardew, it’s HIS season! But as disappointed as I was with his initial appointment, I’m even more than disappointed with some of our fans already wanting him gone! He if nothing else has shown in 6 months he deserves a chance.

  • P.I.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #3

    Pards with an 8 on 10 eh? We’ll lets hope he doesnt start getting too full of himself, and keeps up the hard work.
    I think the “1 or 2 players” craic hes been coming out with recently is beginning to catch on though. I notice Ed’s write up reflects the downturn of freakish optimism of recent weeks.
    We need a large portion of the deadwood to be replaced if we are seriosuly going to push on and become a decent top of the table side.
    We also need to increase the squad side and bring in some major quality. Anything less than a big big summer in terms of comings and goings in the playing staff will see us finishing around those 9th-14th places again and somewhat in limbo.

  • Indian Magpie

    May 18, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #4

    He did well in PL with west Ham in the first season, neraly got relegated second time round. though that cd be down to certain Mr tevez and mascherano

  • P.I.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #5

    i completely agreed with your comments but you know as well as i do it wont be as easy as what may be suggested by the comments below;

    By now he should know exactly what each and every member of our squad is capable of, so he will know where we are weak, and hopefully who to bring in to resolve it.

    I’m sure he’s thinking about where he needs to strengthen the squad, and every man and his King Charles Spaniel knows we need a centre forward, but it’s dependant on the chunky chap upstairs to splash the dirty cash. i’ve got no doubt that Pardew and G.Carr have identified a number of players who they’d want in, after that it’s up to the boys upstairs to thrash out the deals and get the players in.
    I can see them pulling out of quite a few deals over the summer, so we should expect to see some decent names mentioned on the back pages of the Chronicle, only for them to sign for the likes of Villa, Spuds, Liverpricks, and the sort a week later.


    May 18, 2011 at 9:54 AM

    Comment #6

    I think the 1 or 2 players is refering to bums off seats players (hopefully N’zogbia and a top forward) We have a steady squad of players who have done well for us. HBA can offer that piece of brilliance that can change games. We defo need some pacy intelligent forward who can make the runs for HBA through balls. I look forward to the transfer window with apprehension- Cole/Elmander/Larrson/Reo-Coker/Konchesky, rather than excitment N’Zogbia/Gervinho/Sturridge/Kalou.
    Keep the Faith

  • The Entertainers

    May 18, 2011 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #7

    I know we are all keen to get Jose, Barton and Nolan signed up on new contracts, buts quite worrying the number of players coming into their last year, granted not all will be wanted but there is a substantial amount:
    Lua Lua

    Then there’s Richardson and Donaldson who’s contracts are up.
    The majority of the players will be expected to stay next season and will undoubtedly want improved contracts! More money going out of our pot.
    Seriously doubt we will sign more than 5 players and that’s me being generous. Having said that don’t think we need that many.

  • Geordiedoonsooth

    May 18, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    Comment #8

    Lets wait & see what happens the real proof will come from his summer signings & where we are in the league come Xmas. I think next season will be tougher than this one. QPR have money though I think Norwich & Reading/Swansea will struggle. We must be careful of second season syndrome. I’m excited but also aprehesive about next season it all depends on Fat Tw*t putting his hand in his pocket & how much he pulls out.

  • supervil

    May 18, 2011 at 9:59 AM

    Comment #9


    We need to clear a large portion of the “deadwood” AND add players to the squad? Not going to happen I’m afraid. Nor should it.

    I think we should get rid of Alan Smith and Sol Campbell. Possibly Lovenkrands. Everyone else should stay. I include Perch and Guthrie in there. They will do a job, of sorts.

    I hope that we keep most of the players we’ve got, there’s a good morale in the team currently and I hope it carries on.

  • murvar

    May 18, 2011 at 9:59 AM

    Comment #10

    I think we will learn as much about him from who he lets go at season end. We seem to have a large squad but too few of them are real quality. Obviously Campbell and Routledge will go; do we still have that Xisco on our books? Goodbye! Taxis for Lovenkrans, Shola, one of the 3 best keepers (I really don’t mind which one), Guthrie, Ryan Taylor, Kadar, Perch, Kuci, Tozer, Smith. We need two full backs (prob 3 when Jose goes), and two really dangerous strikers. That’s the only position where an older player with a proven goalscoring track record should be bought rather than buying young players “with a big future”. Oh what I would give for Drogba – cult hero status would be immediate! Get on that phone, Cheick!

  • Oba

    May 18, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #11

    Ben Arfa will feel like a new signing next season. Just hope that he can get back to the form he showed when he did play this season.

  • G

    May 18, 2011 at 10:14 AM

    Comment #12

    Everybody who is anybody in football seems to be spouting that MA will not flash the cash? So far, in my opinion, he has, he has not done it extravagantly, as lets face it, before a ball was even kicked this season there was a very realistic chance that we would go straight down, therefore, prudence in the market is a very shrewd move. Before anybody bites my head off for being an Ashley lover, let’s put this straight, I don’t like him (mainly because I don’t like cheap trainers and tracksuits), I don’t trust his motives, I certainly don’t trust his business team, however, I do have belief in his business model, the proof is in the pudding, it works. Lets see what happens next season, we might be pleasantly surprised, but I would be much happier if the club kept transfer fees below 5M in principle, after all, there are more Chieke Tiote’s out there, and spunking away 17M on Michael Owen wasn’t what you would call a resounding success either. Whoever it was above that said we only need another 4 or 5 players hit the nail on the head by the way.

  • Rotonda heights

    May 18, 2011 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #13

    as long as Pardew doesnt do something stupid, ie buy C.Cole and Konchesky and shifts: Kuqi, Campbell, Smith and Perch, then I’m sure people will warm to him more, even if he was plucked from obscurity with a rank CV to manage a big club.

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 10:19 AM

    Comment #14

    “Newcastle For Me Has Been Fantastic – Alan Pardew”

    Wish we could say the same but you’re way, way above your paygrade at SJP. Counting the days before you and the Fatman disappear 🙁

  • murvar

    May 18, 2011 at 10:19 AM

    Comment #15

    I don’t want Zog. Attitude problem. Dressing room would not welcome him. Hardly sets the world on fire does he?

  • connor_nufc

    May 18, 2011 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #16

    Yes he does murvar

  • toonfan09

    May 18, 2011 at 10:27 AM

    Comment #17


    ur crazy one of the top prem players if wigan stay up it because of him have u actually watched him play this season and nzogbia has changed his attitude when he was told he couldnt leave last summer he put his head down and worked hard and then again in january when he told he couldnt leave he out his head down and worked hard

  • Phil K

    May 18, 2011 at 10:51 AM

    Comment #18

    Not happy getting Pardew, but TBF he hasn’t disrupted anything, and as a tactician, he’s probably better than Chrissie H (who, a nice guy, was very popular with the fans) still not totally convinced, unlike some.
    It will all depend on his signings, and if the long term injuries get cleared up for next season, and if we can keep Barton and Enrique (although young Shane Fergie looks good enough to walk into Jose’s place as is) we need strengthening and filling out the squad. Chrissie did well in the transfer market, only Perch seemed a bad one. That said, Leon Best was ranked just as bad a signing, but came good.

  • Markaccus

    May 18, 2011 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #19

    I predict a 10th place finnish. We beat WBA, stoke beat wigan because stoke will want a posetive after losing twice to man c, and man c beat bolton because man c arr playing to secure auto qual for chaps league.

    Why do people want rid of loven? He’s a good back up for strikers and wide players, and an excellent profesional. In a small squad you need versatile players like him.

  • ballerfan2

    May 18, 2011 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #20

    “Newcastle For Me Has Been Fantastic – Alan Pardew”

    Wish we could say the same but you’re way, way above your paygrade at SJP. ”

    There we are again. We’ve had one decent season back in the premier league after losing top flight status and suddenly we are too good for the likes of Pardew. Delusional did someone say?
    I’m think Pardew is exactly where we are at just now. Can’t think of anyone better who might be interested in coming to the NE. Of course Allardyce is free …. again ….

  • P.I.

    May 18, 2011 at 10:53 AM

    Comment #21


    The Deadwood i referred to included;

    (I like Smudger as he’s probably a great perosnality in the dressing room and great for morale but he’ll be on good money and is essentially a championship level midfielder nowadays. He can be easily replaced or even Gosling playing will be that man)

    *Lovenkrands AND/OR Shola
    One or both of these fellas has to go. Lovenkrands has been decent, his running off the ball is good, but he’s not going to get shed loads of goals in this division and he’s not getting any younger. We need better if we are to progress. Same goes for Shola really who has been here long enough to make an impact and never has. They can easily be replaced.
    I think Best won himself a place in next years squad with the goals against Arsenal, and Ranger should go on loan for a season.

    *Cambell and Kuqi
    Both will certainly be on their way, and granted they didnt play often but they were bodies in the squad who either need to be replaced with signings or for Pardew to put faith in some of the young lads to come through. Airey could go on loan as well as Ranger? Or allow one of them to play as opposed to Kuqi.

    Would love him to stay but it’s still up in the air, and he may be waiting to see who we bring in as signings before he makes his mind up on a move?Either way we need another left back to use as back up and competition for places.

  • Phil K

    May 18, 2011 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #22

    N’Zog wanted away. It wasn’t just Kinnear, thats ridiculous. His agent was behind it, and N’Zog is an arrogant pompous prat. He’s proved that at Wigan, constantly whining to be away.
    But he DID knuckle down and produce.
    I put that down to good management from Martinez.
    No doubting his ability, and I’d have him back.
    But he’d be wanting away as soon as he starts producing form. Its the petulant git he is.
    But he IS very talented and WILL produce, if a true Prima Donna

  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #23

    Nail on the head there ballerfan!

    People dont seem to realise that if we sack AP we arent suddenly going to get a top class manager in as a replacement, its going to be someone else around the same level.

    AP’s been given a 5 year deal and I hope he see’s it through, at least it would give the club some kind of stability, something we havent had in years as we keep sacking managers before they’ve had a chance to make their mark on the club and squad.

  • Markaccus

    May 18, 2011 at 11:01 AM

    Comment #24

    @ P.I. I agree appart from loven. Fair enough he’s not first choice, but he’s a useful squad member, and like I said before, we need players like him in a small squad, I don’t think we could afford to get rid of him. His experience was invaluable against chelsea, playing out wide. He can help close out tough games for 15 mins. All the best teams have this type of player in their squad

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #25

    “People dont seem to realise that if we sack AP we arent suddenly going to get a top class manager in as a replacement, its going to be someone else around the same level”

    I’m not advocating sacking the Clueless One just hoping that someone, with a modicum of ambition, will take this club over and bring in the right people for the job.

    We were always likely to do well with what was an already established Premiership squad. All that Pardwho has done is manage to keep our heads above water.

    Any other decent manager such as Martin Jol, who was available at the time but not a gambling buddy unfortunately, could have done wonders here in terms of attracting players and motivating the existing squad but that’s not what the Owner wanted. He needed a fall guy who could take the flak when Carroll was sold and who would try to explain why we didnt buy a replacement striker.

    Pardwho is a joke and a very bad one at that. His track record is that of the average “journeyman” manager and almost no European experience which is vital for a club like ours if we are to progress.

    Sadly progressing is something we’ll find hard to do while he’s in charge as its unlikely that many quality players will want to join NUFC while he’s at the helm !

  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #26

    For someone whos not advocating sacking him you dont exactly give him much support.

    What exactly has he done wrong so far this season? I say at least give him til the end of the transfer window before you label him as the fat mans fall guy.

    If he comes good and we attract a few good players then I’ll be extremely happy with the job hes done so far.

    If like you say, he wont attract anyone then I’ll agree with you.

    You cant really say quality players wont want to join when he hasnt even had a proper crack at a transfer window yet.

  • Markaccus

    May 18, 2011 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #27

    And if newcastle manage to get to europe in a couple of years, I suppose it’ll be because we were already established as a euro quality team from sir bobbys days???
    Some people are never happy

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #28

    “Some people are never happy”

    So tell me young Mark were you HAPPY with Souness as manager ? Or Roeder or Allardyce ?
    Pardwho is on a level with those underachievers and yet you and others seem to think he’s the best this club could possibly hope for ???

    Brainwashed noy deluded 🙁

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #29


  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #30


    At the minute he probably is the best we can hope for.

    As I said before, if he gets sacked, who do you expect to replace him? No manager worth his name would touch us with a ten foot barge pole thanks to the ‘unique’ way MA likes to run the club.

    Before we hired AP, Martin O’Neill and Martin Jol both turned us down, and if you believe the rumours, so did Klinsmann.

    So yeah, sack that journeyman pardew! We’ll get bloody Avram Grant in instead and get relegated next season.

  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #31

    Or even better, we’ll get JFK back!

  • wynsleap

    May 18, 2011 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #32

    I’m really worried some people are saying that Ben Arfa and Gosling will be like two new exciting signings next season.
    They certainly could be but they could also find that the serious injuries they have had have left them only half the players they were.
    I hope that these two don’t become so important to the cause that we opt not to buy the players we REALLY need, ie two top strikers, visionary midfield playmaker (not just another runner) and possibly two decent full back back ups.
    Ben Arfa and Gosling coming back fit and firing would then be a huge bonus.

  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #33


    If you believe the coaching staff, manager, and his agent HBA is coming back stronger than he was before the injury. It was clean break so there arent usually too many complications.

    You’re right about Gosling though, he could spend alot more time on the treatment table than the pitch when he comes back next season like.

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #34

    “At the minute he probably is the best we can hope for”

    Rephrase that to “at the minute he probably is the best YOU can hope for”.

    I, on the other hand, happen to believe the manager’s job at this club is one of the biggest in European football. Plenty of young “up and coming” managers would give their right arm to land this job but the only thing you’re right about is they probably wouldnt want to work with the Fatman.

  • P.I.

    May 18, 2011 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #35

    Im afriad i agree with Wayne-Sleep (dreadful handle by the way mate) on this one.
    Ben Arfa will need to be right mentally aswell as physically. I would hope he’ll be the player he was but you are wrong with what you say about ‘complications’ as there was infact quite a dodgy complication with his leg getting infected after the operation, and he required a further op to remove the infection.
    That aside the agent and those around him say he’s doing well. That may be the case but we wont know until he pulls on a shirt and plays a competitive match. I just hope the injury counts for nothing and hes back to his best because he was a joy to watch, reminded me of Ginola again which we’ve missed for a lot of years.

  • Stuart

    May 18, 2011 at 11:42 AM

    Comment #36

    Haha, you’ve just argued against my point, then ended up agreeing with it, cheers!

  • Markaccus

    May 18, 2011 at 11:43 AM

    Comment #37

    Andymac, when did I say he was the best we could hope for, I am merely one of many who are satisfied with what we have acheived this season under him, and believe he has earned the right to another season to see if he can move us on another step. Souness destroyed our team, so no I was not happy with him, same as allardyce. But since you are putting words in my mouth, I will return the favour, obviously you expected a trophy and euro football this season, from a club just promoted.

  • GeordieRob

    May 18, 2011 at 11:47 AM

    Comment #38

    I can’t believe people still after all this time think that some sort of fiscal discipline is somehow a terrible thing. Every month I get the pay cheque and buy the things I can afford. I don’t wish for some long lost relative to come into my life and buy me a pony or a Ferrari. Nor do I put 10 grand on a credit card and hope it all goes away. It’s life. And yet I’m apparently brainwashed…

    For too long this club has bankrolled some overpaid work-shy poor excuses for footballers’ North East working holiday.

  • G

    May 18, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #39

    @ PI, sorry to split hairs mate, but I used to enjoy watching Wyn the Leap play quite often in my younger days, and I happen to think Wynsleap is one of the more imaginative user names on here.

  • AndyMac

    May 18, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #40

    Stuart says:
    “Haha, you’ve just argued against my point, then ended up agreeing with it, cheers!”

    Dont know if you noticed Stuart but very few people ever agree with you 🙂

    Markaccus says :
    “obviously you expected a trophy and euro football this season, from a club just promoted”

    No but I expected better performances from this squad at places like Stevenage, Aston Villa, Stoke and the Red Scousers !


You must log in to post a comment.