Mike Williamson gave an excellent interview to the Newcastle local press over the weekend, and it’s one we missed.
Mike Williamson – Pardew proved himself to the players quickly
But reading what Mike has said about how Alan Pardew came into a skeptical Newcastle squad last December, annoyed and disappointed about the way Chris Hughton had been fired, Mike shows that Alan has done almost everything right since he arrived on Tyneside.
We didn’t think Alan was the right choice at all, but in that first press conference, when he was all on his lonesome, he did extremely well in the way he handled all kinds of questions from a skeptical press.
And Alan was smart in that he didn’t make many changes at all, and was able to keep the momentum going and waited until the summer to bring in stricter rules for the players in terms of not being late for training, and new rules for what was needed when players had injuries.
And the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and most things seem to have worked very well although there is still a long way to go if Pardew is to make Newcastle into a truly great side again.
Mike, who is still around five weeks from coming back from his ankle injury, talked about Alan coming into the club:
“I think maybe last year more than this, there were big characters in the dressing room and as a new manager you have to win them over,”
“I think first and foremost you have to win over the lads. That is the most important thing – if you were to impose yourself, you might find it difficult.”
“He handled it very well and the given the position we are today, you can’t really knock him.” “He didn’t come across as nervous but I can imagine he felt the same as the rest of us – unsure about what to expect from us all.”
“First impressions count and it was a good one. I think the lads here were disappointed to see Chris Hughton go, but it happens in football, and you start with a clean slate – a blank piece of paper if you like.”
“He came in and he didn’t try and change anything, he just kept the momentum going. He didn’t try and make some big changes straight away”
“Over the summer there were more changes, he was implementing his own little things. Fair play, it’s worked very well.” “You earn respect. You earn that on and off the field – it’s everything I suppose,”
“As much as the players wanted to prove themselves to the manager, I’m sure the manager wanted to do that to the players too.”
“He’s done that – he won our respect, we’ve won his and it’s about pushing on now and trying to improve things.”
We were dead against Alan when he came in last December, but of course when it’s made official you have to give the man a chance and support him.
And certainly his first media interview showed he was down to earth, and seemed to know what he was talking about, and he had certainly done his homework on the history of Newcastle United too.
We don’t know how well Alan Pardew will do in the future at Newcastle, but we hope he will be fantastically successful and therefore be here a long time.
And there’s not too many managers who could have done much better than Alan has in his first 11 months on Tyneside.
That’s almost indisputable based on Alan’s great track record so far as manager of Newcastle.