One year ago today Alan Pardew was appointed as manager of Newcastle United amidst a furious backlash from fans who were against him from the start.
Fast forward a year and here we are, sitting 6th in the Premier League with our best start to a Premier League season for 17 years in the bag and I think it’s fair to say that Pardew has silenced even the most ardent doubter with his results and the way he has conducted himself in the intense spotlight of the NUFC hotseat.
Being honest I wasn’t overly enthused about his appointment, but then again I wasn’t overly enthused about Chris Hughton’s appointment and he proved me wrong so I just figured that Pardew may have done the same and gave him a chance from the word go. Fortunately it appears that he is the right man for the job, at the right time, for Newcastle United.
When you think of a potential manager of Newcastle you have to think about Laurel and Hardy upstairs. It’s all well and good saying Martin Jol or whoever was available at the time, but you have to bear in mind that not many people will be willing to work with the two upstairs give their track record in football and the well documented mismanagement of previous managers.
However there is a need for any manager to sort of get along with their bosses, and fortunately Alan Pardew seems to be able to do that. This has led to him being called a “stooge” or a “puppet” or other such names previously, but I’d challenge anyone to gob off about their boss in public and see how long they have a job to go back to.
There is an element of good fortune involved with Alan Pardew though. In a sense he is probably fortunate to be in such a job, which mirrored the general feeling at the time of his appointment. However just because he is lucky to be in the job in the first place it doesn’t mean that he hasn’t justified his continued employment. To me he has done just that with what he has brought to the table so far.
Sometimes I find it hard to ‘draw a line’ between the Hughton era and Pardew era. For example some attribute the good run of form when Pardew was appointed to the effect of the fallout from the sacking of Chris Hughton. I suppose the best way to look at it is what has Pardew done with his own team?
He has had a couple of transfer windows now and whilst they haven’t been the best we’ve still managed to bring in some cracking players. The best thing for me is that he wasn’t afraid to speak about and voice his obvious disappointment over the failure to bring in a striker over the summer. I can only hope that he has shown enough to get a bit more back from above in current windows.
Can we do any better than Pardew? At this moment in time I don’t think so. He’s not the star name that we’ve seen in the past but he is bringing us results and we’ve seen an upturn in both form and performances.Can we really ask for any more in terms of football right now?
Happy anniversary, Alan Pardew!