Since Alan Pardew arrived on Tyneside just over a year ago, one thing we have found out about the Londoner, is that he is very passionate and wants to win every game.
Alan Pardew – looking a little distressed yesterday
And there’s nothing much wrong with that.
When Pardew arrived last December he was greeted with a big yawn by most fans, and there was even some anger amongst fans that Chris Highton had been fired, only to be replaced by Pardew, who hardly had a stellar record in management.
And he certainly hadn’t managed a club anywhere near as big as Newcastle United.
But I always remember what my son Neil said about Pardew when he was first appointed Newcastle manager, which was basically – don’t forget he’s not the manager he was at Charlton or Southampton – because he will have learned from those mistakes he made there – he will be a different manager at Newcastle.
My view on that at the time was – yeah right!
But in a nutshell, that seems to have been what has happened on Tyneside, and Alan has learned from his past mistakes, and he has even talked about that.
Pardew took Charlton Athletic down in 2007, when they finished second bottom of the Premier League with 34 points, the same number of points Newcastle were relegated with in 2009.
Alan says he has taken a more measured approach at Newcastle when things get into a crisis, as they often seem to do at the Newcastle club, and he learned a lot form that Charlton experience.
Newcastle may be close to a mini crisis now, with just one point from the last four games, but we are still 7th top of the league, and even yesterday there were a lot of positives to take from the game.
Alan was interviewed in the Sunday Sun today, and he was asked if he thinks he is better manager now at Newcastle:
“Yes, 100 per cent.” “I was a better manager after I realised at Charlton that I didn’t quite get it right, although I was really up against it.”
“That situation is much harder than this. We had 10 points when I arrived there halfway through the season and we almost got out of it.”
“But when you get relegated and you lose £27M of talent from a team like Charlton’s then it is really difficult.”
“But I learned a lot of things there and some of the things that have happened here also happened to me at Charlton.”
Pardew continues to speak his mind to people like owner Mike Ashley, but when there are inevitable disagreements, they are handled in a professional manner.
Once case in point was when the Newcastle Board failed to sign a striker on the last day of the summer transfer window, and the Newcastle fans were up in arms.
Pardew was obviously not happy about it, to put it mildly, and refused to speak to the press for a full week following that August 31st debacle.
The news is that he let Ashley and LLambias know, in no uncertain terms, that it was unacceptable, but he kept his own council on that from the press, which is the professional and mature way to handle these kinds of disagreements.
And in short Alan has done extremely well so far as Newcastle manager.
But we also have to hope he’s talking to the powers that be at Newcastle right now, to convince them he needs two new defenders in the January transfer window to strengthen his squad, which was ruthlessly exposed by a mediocre Norwich side yesterday at Carrow Road.
And any new players should be brought in during early January, so they can immediately be used in the squad.