Alan Pardew has had a turbulent managerial career; from FA Cup finals with West Ham, to being relieved of his duties with League 1 Southampton. Those experiences made him an ideal candidate for joining the roller coaster that is Newcastle United; even if some of us were oblivious at the time.
He started off by accepting the post on Thursday, December 9th after Chris Hughton had been harshly sacked earlier in the week. He wasn’t fancied by a lot of people; pundits and fans alike and was expected to be badly beaten at home to Liverpool in his first game. How wrong we were. He went on to win the game 3-1 as we all know, and quickly got any doubters on board, as well as keeping the press quiet.
He then endured a nightmare January transfer window, with Andy Carroll moving away without a replacement lined up. Pardew’s critics returned with a vengeance. Despite this mass vendetta against him, and losing Carroll, Pardew managed to keep us up, and went on to have one of the club’s biggest summers in recent years.
June 2011 – Alan Pardew’s Newcastle United had a huge wad of cash to spend following the sale of Andy Carroll for £35m in the window previous. The way Pardew spent this money would no doubt be the difference between relegation and survival. He started off well enough, bringing in the exciting Demba Ba on a free transfer and also securing the services of the excellent Yohan Cabaye. So far, so good, right? Well the small problem of club captain Kevin Nolan leaving for £4m left a gaping hole in the goal scoring charts. Things went from bad to worse as Joey Barton ran his mouth on Twitter, and lack lustre display in pre-season hardly motivated fans for the long season ahead.
Pardew went on to make a couple more summer signings, notably Gabriel Obertan and Davide Santon, but optimism was at an all time low. We’d hit the rocks again and people were starting to doubt Pardew and the sides chances yet again.
However, amongst all the pessimism outside the club, Alan Pardew’s men slowly gathered results. We racked up a massive 11 game unbeaten streak in the league, as well as having a solid foundations in defence; the likes of which this club has never seen before. Pardew was building something amazing. The fans sung his name in delight at the success Pardew had brung, we were a team people envied; the small clubs wanted to be us, and the big sides didn’t want to play us. Pardew had did what no one said he could, the glory of years gone by under the likes of Keegan have been brought back by Pardew.
So before anybody decides to doubt the decisions made by our manager, just remember how we were under the likes of Allardyce, Kinnear and Roeder. Under Alan Pardew and the business plan of Mike Ashley, we are contenders for top six, have desirable players and European football. Don’t forget that.
What do you think? Let us know on twitter (@thespectoview) or on the comments section below.