If, as expected, Alan Pardew is confirmed as Crystal Palace manager it leaves our club with a position to fill.
From the outside it looks as though Pardew has done a decent job at United with some sections of the media branding our treatment of him unfair during recent rumblings of discontent.
We keep hearing that we finished fifth, that we have unreasonable expectations, that our final league positions have been alright. Apparently we expect Champions League football and should just pipe down because we’ve won nothing for years and should just be happy with staying in the Premier League.
However I’ve stumbled across a page of facts that at least paint a fairer picture of why so many fans were becoming unhappy. As I said in a previous article, you can’t dine out on a fifth placed finished forever, but I’d like you all to cast your minds back to the end of the 2011/2012 season where times were happier and we’d just unexpectedly qualified for the Europe League. Now I’d like you to take a look at the table below…
All of these statistics have been compiled since we finished fifth so there are two complete seasons plus the games we’ve played this season which is quite sizeable example in fairness. They also compare with teams who have remained in the Premier League for the entire period. So, starting from the top left….
Games Won: These stats cover a total of 95 league games of which we’ve won 32. That’s a win ratio of just over 33%.
Games Lost: Of the 95 games, we’ve lost 45 which is 47% of our league games since the 2011/2012 season.
Clean Sheets: It’s not good reading here either as we’ve managed to maintain a clean sheet on just 21 occasions. Granted it’s unfair to land all of that at the feet of Pardew but there are signs that the defence needs work which have gone unheeded.
Failed to Score: We’ve fired blanks in 33 of these of these 95 games. Only Stoke and Aston Villa have failed to find the net more than us.
Goals For: Not good reading here either with just 107 goals scored, or an average of just over one per game.
Goals Against: A total of 153 goals conceded – 1.6 per match – the worst of the 15 teams sampled.
Goal Difference: A net goal difference of -46 which has only been ‘bettered’ by Aston Villa and their goal difference of -55.
Total Points: We’ve amassed 113 points – just under 1.2 each game.
Some of them aren’t bad but others are chronic and should help with why some fans have just had enough. Remember we’re not even talking about the waffle, flannel, headbutts, pushes, swearing, record losing streaks, historic runs of derby defeats and other incidents that have happened on his watch.
I’ve written this because I was stood having a coffee yesterday and was talking about football to a colleague. The subject came up about Pardew to Palace and his response was the same as many on the outside have said – “I thought he was doing OK for you lot,” he quipped. After a while pointing things out he got where we’re coming from.
So if you find yourself in a situation like that, whip this article out on your phone and show people that all has not been rosey in the garden of St James’ Park for some time and that we’re not a reactionary bunch. We’re just fed up with the excuses.
Agree or disagree?