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Pardew makes the perfect start

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Phil McNulty | 21:39 UK time, Saturday, 11 December 2010

St James' Park

Alan Pardew's welcome to Newcastle United was one of polite indifference as opposed to naked hostility - apart from when one irate fan craned his neck towards the new manager and shouted: "Sort it out Curbishley."

Pardew might have embraced this case of mistaken identity had he concluded another tempestuous week on Tyneside with defeat in his first game against Liverpool after stepping in to succeed the sacked, hugely popular Chris Hughton.

Instead, as Newcastle's fans celebrated a deserved 3-1 win in the traditional watering holes of The Strawberry and Shearer's Bar, Pardew left St. James' Park a much happier place than he had found it when he arrived hours earlier.

Mike Ashley's decision to dismiss Hughton and replace him with Pardew persuaded hundreds of Newcastle supporters to gather underneath The Milburn Stand hours before kick-off. They registered noisy disapproval of the owner and support for the manager they feel has suffered a grave injustice.

And as Pardew slipped into his technical area almost unnoticed, banners were stretched across The Gallowgate End declaring thanks to Hughton for his work in taking Newcastle back into the Premier League and assembling the squad, not to mention the spirit, that was ultimately too much for a desperately disappointing Liverpool.

Even in victory, Newcastle's fans cut their celebrations short to deliver another colourful blast in Ashley's direction - but in between those early protests near Barrack Road and that final show of dissent, there was a performance that at least lifted a measure of the discontent that is clearly felt on Tyneside.

Pardew can hardly be blamed for accepting the manager's job at a club that can still pull in 50,000 fans even when there is a mood of mutiny in the air. And he played it pretty much to perfection on and off the pitch.

Is an out-of-work manager going to turn down the chance to take charge of a Premier League club simply because the previous incumbent has been cruelly dispensed with? Not likely - and not too many of Pardew's peers have form for that sort of behaviour.

He realised there was no appetite for the big introductions after the rancour provoked by Hughton's departure, duly keeping under the radar for much of the evening and offering brief applause at the final whistle.

Pardew told BBC Sport: "I was never going to go out into the middle of the pitch clapping the fans. They don't trust or know what I can do, but I have got faith in my ability as a manager and with this group of players, and the response I have had, this was very positive."

He required some good news fast once the action got under way, and Kevin Nolan provided it with an early goal. And even though Newcastle wobbled briefly after Dirk Kuyt's equaliser, they recovered to seal a well-merited win with late goals from Joey Barton and Andy Carroll.

And for someone who has been accused of not showing any feel for Newcastle or their supporters, the elation on Ashley's face as he was hugged by associates after the goals may also have contained a liberal sprinkling of relief.

Pardew faced up to both cheers and jeers before his debut win Photo: Getty

Newcastle's supporters, having vented their feelings, delivered the usual support to their team. They did not appear to hold any obvious grudge against Pardew - and to win in such an impressive manner will at least help to give some foundations to a fragile relationship.

He was also at pains not to take too much credit for the three points, recognising emotions are still raw on and off the pitch about Hughton's replacement, as proved when Barton publicly dedicated his man-of-the-match awared to the departed former manager.

Pardew, his voice croaky from attempting to get his message across to the men he has inherited, said: "A lot of the good stuff that went on today has been going on all year.

"There has been disappointment about the events of this week, which is understandable because Chris Hughton is a gentleman and he has done lots of good work, but ultimately they don't support me or individual players they support the shirt."

He added: "Chris Hughton is very, very unfortunate not to be sitting here discussing this win but this game is not easy and can be cruel. I had a very similar issue at Southampton."

Where Pardew is fortunate is that Hughton has left behind the core of a squad that should survive in comfort this season, which should be Newcastle's only priority this season.

This only makes Ashley's decision to change manager even more mystifying, but this is not Pardew's problem and he has plenty of raw material to work with.

And in Barton, the star of the show, he has a player who can be a huge influence if he can subdue the dark side of his personality that has dogged his career. For all the accusations levelled at the Merseysider, he has never been called a bad player and he was outstanding.

Carroll is another who has had well-chronicled off-field issues, but he terrorised Liverpool's defence (which admittedly did not take much terrorising) and is one asset Ashley dare not dispense with.

It is only a start for Pardew, but the one he must have had in his mind as he put his hastily-assembled plans in place for Liverpool.

As for Liverpool, the travel sickness that afflicts them the moment the team coach pulls on to the M62 continues. Manager Roy Hodgson has rarely looked angrier in a horribly mixed first season in charge, a campaign full of false starts.

Kuyt's goal should have been the signal for Liverpool to play on Newcastle's nerves, to take advantage of the turmoil to be found if they scratched beneath the surface. Instead, one glaring Fernando Torres chance apart, it was Newcastle who demonstrated the endeavour and desire to go on and win.

Barton's goal was testimony to his persistence but a crime against basic defending, while Carroll's admirable finish was assisted by Liverpool standing acres away from the danger.

History tells us that chaos is always around the corner at Newcastle United - but as Pardew made his way out of St. James' Park a measure of normality had been restored after the latest madcap week on Tyneside.

For how long? Who can even guess?

You can follow me at twitter.com/philmcnulty and join me on Facebook.


Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Most of the tactics used to win the game was Hughtons lets see what he's(Pardew) got in the coming days for liverpools are we going to see Roy being sacked before January?

  • Comment number 2.

    "Pardew can hardly be blamed for accepting the manager's job at a club"

    --

    just because rumours aren't fact doesn't mean you can't totally dismiss them, a large part of newcastle's discontentment with the appointment of pardew and early dislike of the man is the role he is rumoured to have had in the changeover.

    i don't like that the bbc would censor this and carry on as though pardew smelt completely of roses, it should at least be acknowledged that there's a reason (even if an unproven one, it's still a reason) for the fans' dislike of him. all is not forgiven either

  • Comment number 3.

    I have to admit i thought Pardew handled himself very well in the post match press conference. It would have been easy to score some early points by claiming the credit for the win, but instead he was very magnanimous.

    I still don't get the rationale to get rid of a popular manager and replace him with a manager which is unproven. I can't believe that Ashley has seen something in Pardew that has escaped the rest of us.

    What makes it even more puzzling is the length of contract too. 5 years can be a millstone around the neck of the club if it all goes wrong, unless of course there is some performance related clauses built in to it....

    As for Liverpool. There have been countless debates on it, but they really are a poor team, and it is just showing what is to come for them if/when Gerrard and Torres leave the club and are not adequately replaced. The hope would have to be that in the January transfer window some funds are released for Roy to strengthen the side, but judging by his purchases so far, i am not sure he would be trusted with the money.

  • Comment number 4.

    Certainly a good start, but not the guarantee of a successful reign. More than half the season remains, and harder one at that too. So alot to be seen how he fares..

  • Comment number 5.

    BTW, again, Phil writes about a non-top 4 team and only 4 replies in 3 hrs! And as soon as he writes about a big club, every1 will start accussing him of a Liverpool/Man Utd/Chelsea/Spurs fan (depending on which team he writes on).

  • Comment number 6.

    Ahsan - the blog was published at 9.39pm not exactly the peak time for 606 users unless your a nocturnal fella

  • Comment number 7.

    Although it's a late blog Ahsan is right, the blogs about Man U/Liverpool are more popular, seems BBC posters are just about as biased as they claim Phil to be. It's just a bit frustrating when you feel your team deserves a mention and they don't get it. Case in point; you're quick to give Hughton praise for all his good work this season, but we didn't get one blog while he was still employed, even after that magical 5-1 drubbing of Sunderland.

    Anyway, back on topic... Today showed how stupid Ashley's sacking was. Pardew employed the same team as Hughton and the same tactics; our only difference was that Nolan and Barton were back in action, our two most influential players that we've sorely missed in this bad spell. As well as Nolan and Barton, Carroll, Tiote and Jose were excellent as always.
    Fair play to Pardew, his press conferences and the way he's conducted his arrival have been respectful so far, but if the rumours are true that he was in negotiations with Ashley before he sacked Hughton he'll still be treated with contempt. After worrying we'll be a certainty to go down this year, today lifted my spirits a bit. We need to keep hold of Carroll, Barton etc. in the transfer window, for me we don't need any major signings, maybe another striker and central midfielder possibly on loan (I've also heard Ben Arfa will be back late January which will be like a new siging). I just hope our good team spirit doesn't get disrupted by fall-outs or new signings.

  • Comment number 8.

    You can't blame Phil if people show more of an interest in the top 4, especially with 2 points separting the top 4 at the moment. It's certainly more interesting then the adventures of any mediocre mid-table team!

  • Comment number 9.

    separating*

  • Comment number 10.

    " as proved when Barton publicly dedicated his man-of-the-match awared to the departed former manager"

    lol, it should be award.

    anyway, i watched newcastle today and they were fantastic, as a man u fan i was thrilled to see them beat liverpool. newcastle's big three of barton, nolan and carroll ran the game today and Nile Ranger came on as a sub and made an incredible impact.

    a thoroughly deserved victory, now let's see what Pardew can really do.

  • Comment number 11.

    It is infuriating to see Liverpool's home form twinned with away form - at home we seem to dispatch in general of team quite easily, away from home we never, ever take control. The team is definately better then it is showing away from home, as the home performances show, so why are we such shrinking daisies when it comes to what should have been an oppurtunity to catch Newcastle at a sore point.

    So, so infuriating. But oh well. Our youngsters playing and getting through the europa league group stages is a small bright spark on what is a very irritating year so far. I thought Roy was supposed to bring the best out of the players that Rafa lost the trust of last year... ha ha ha...

  • Comment number 12.

    All the haters should have been quietened after just 90 mins of football and 3 points. so much negativity, even from the club's own supporters, not even giving their new manager any backing b4 the match.

    The way people talked about hughton, i thought there was a new mourinho amongst us, not a glorified number 2 who struck lucky in a strangely even pl season and with a striker who happened to be in form, having guided a team of premier league experienced players out of the championship...

    but with the likes of o'neill and jol available, they go for pardew?? great job he did at charlton..

  • Comment number 13.

    Whatever the pros and cons are with this game and whole situation, in my opinion, this game was one of excitement like a few others I have seen and above the norm. I had to clear and shovel snow today but caught the Lion's share of this game. It was pulsating even if others might say it wasn't of the utmost quality per teams involved.

  • Comment number 14.

    Why Newcastle fans should get behind Pardew and protests will only make things worse:

    http://toonbarmy.wordpress.com/2010/12/11/pardew-appointed/

  • Comment number 15.

    Pernicious speculation on why the hugely successful manager Chris Hughton was dismissed should have been explained. It is in the best interest of the club and its future, even if personal differences was the cause.

  • Comment number 16.

    A good win for Newcastle, albeit against a misfiring Liverpool... 3 points is 3 points though.

    Nevertheless, I think the way Pardew conducted himself today will have endeared him more to the fans than the victory - as other's rightly point out, it was victory achieved with another man's tools.

    It will be interesting to see how those tools develop as Pardew brings his own style to them, and what changes are made to the toolbox come January.... based on past history I'm expecting some astonishing victories coupled with some incomprehensible defeats... but mostly staying safe and central in the table - which I would classify as Job Done for NUFC for this season.

    Certainly we've seen over the years that Pardew has the ability to bring success to a club.... but often fails to deliver on it

  • Comment number 17.

    Congs to pardew for registering a win on his game. for liverpool, i expected it to take advantage of the 'turmoil' at tyneside and register a win. I think the shocking dismissal of Chris Hughton should be put to rest and give Pardew the support he deserves.

    Phil, we need a blog on the Man Utd- Arsenal prior to the clash.

  • Comment number 18.

    Bit of a lucky start for AP in terms of having a home game first up and against a poor, poor Liverpool team as well. As previous posters have already stated, it was CH's team and tactics that were used.

    To be fair he can't bring his own players in until Jan anyway.

    But am I the only one who can understand where Ashley is/was coming from in all this Hughton-to-Pardew-Gate?

    He ownes the club. NUFC belongs to him. Its because of Ashley the club is debt-free. I'll say it again - 'debt-free'!

    Not even Liverpool and Man Utd can say that!

    He wants Premier league stability. Wasnt prepared to offer CH a long term deal, for reasons I am about to give you, a chose a cheap manager with more prem experience because hes not got alot of money to play with.

    Back to CH, seems like a great guy. Lots of potential to be a good manager. But if you look at his record this season you may know why Ashley made the change.

    Yes, they beat Sunderland and Yes they got a luck win at Arsenal.

    What about losing at home to Blackpool? The home loss to Stoke?
    Draws against Wigan and Wolves?
    0-0 at home to Fulham? Who draws 0-0 at home to Fulham?!

    The home loss to Blackburn? Then the 2 drubbings against WBA and Bolton?

    I can see why Ashley didnt want to offer him a long-term deal.

  • Comment number 19.

    Well 3 points are 3 points but I saw nothing in the way we played yesterday that was different from when CH was the manager. Subs wise he brought on Ranger for Ameobi at pretty much the same point in the game that CH did.
    We played well but were not great and we still seem to lack the ability to move the ball around effectively in the midfield area. We rely too much on pinging the long ball up for Andy Carroll to nod down. There is so much more to Carroll’s game than being a target man but we lack players that can play the ball on the ground through to him. Ben Arfa should the promise of that but De Jong’s seemingly legal reducer put an end to that for now. Pardew must buy a creative and consistent midfield player and Cash(less)ly must provide the funds if his so called ambitions are to be realised.

    As for the comments about the lack of response to this posting: please remember that we, the members of the Toon Army, were too busy chilling after a week to remember for all the wrong reasons… and no one can accuse us of being quiet on the CH issue

  • Comment number 20.

    "Ben Arfa showed the promise of that but De Jong’s seemingly legal reducer put an end to that for now."

    oops typo!

  • Comment number 21.

    Why do all those Jocks keep referring to Ashley et al as "Cockneys"?
    Not one of them is from east London let alone being born within the sound of Bow bells.
    No, I know people from Newcastle aren't Jocks but it makes as much sense to call them Jocks as it does to call Ashley a Cockney.

  • Comment number 22.

    This game could and should have turned out so differently.

    I'll wager that if Liverpool scored first Newcastle would have imploded.

    Unfortunately, Hodgson's insipid tactics meant a wasted first half and a wasted opportunity.

  • Comment number 23.

    #19"Well 3 points are 3 points but I saw nothing in the way we played yesterday that was different from when CH was the manager."


    Considering that he only had 1 indoor training session with the players before the game, what did you expect? It's Alan Pardew - not David Copperfield!!!!

  • Comment number 24.

    Trevor,

    I agree about your geographic specification of Cockneys...but remember one thing - If it wasn't for the Geordies, you would be Scots!

    The rest of you southern English collaborating half-men can remember that. We live in the greatest and most civilized city on earth, the invincible and legendary Newcastle upon Tyne. So remember the truth and work on removing the exploitation and degradation from your communities that you ignore every day.
    Dismissed...

  • Comment number 25.

    It was only liverpool, wait until he faces a real team like wolves, west ham etc

  • Comment number 26.

    Excellent start for him
    It's too early to say whether he is good manager for Newcastle
    Lets see what results he gets with Newcastle this month and then decide

  • Comment number 27.

    Good start for Pardew, it was however against a Liverpool team that is currently sending me to the depths of despair. Well done Newcastle for the win. Liverpool seriously need to start getting their act together - they were clueless yesterday and the defending was atrocious.

  • Comment number 28.

    It doesnt matter what Pardew does with this team, as anything short of getting them a Champions league spot, people will just say CH would have got them to the same position if not better.
    As for Liverpool, another terrible away performance by all accounts. Torres' finishing has potentially cost them 2 away wins recently against Spurs and now Newcastle. What's happened to him??? Having said that, its not easy playing against a team with a new manager as most players will work harder etc.

  • Comment number 29.

    I'm with Tevez, we need to get back to basics fast. There's a whiff of revolution in the air. Pardew, Hughton and most of the others, completely and utterly boring, who cares. The game is now devoid of anything except money and egos. Trouble is football fans are the most fickle, hypocritical group of individuals. In the words of Gregg Lake, at christmas 'we get what we deserve'.
    I think that's how it goes anyway

  • Comment number 30.

    Pardew will be judged on the next five and a half months by the fans. Only then we might start thinking about five and a half e.

    And at least for atfive and a half months, any achevements will have been thanks to the legacy the admirable Hughton has created.

  • Comment number 31.

    Enbarrassing typos result of cut and paste mess up above. Apologies!

    Pardew will be judged on the next five and a half months by the fans. Only then we might start thinking about five and a half years.

    And at least for five and a half months, any achievements will have been thanks to the legacy the admirable Hughton has created.

  • Comment number 32.

    I thought Kevin Nolan deserved a hell of a lot of credit for how he handled himself in the post-match interview - he seemed really frank and articulate and it was a pleasure to watch.

    As for Pardew, whilst I think it's shocking Hughton was sacked in the manner he was, I don't think he's in any sense a disastrous appointment. Charlton went badly but he's handled himself well everywhere else he's managed and he was as unlucky as Hughton was when he was sacked earlier this season.

    Whether he'll do a better or worse job than Hughton would have is something nobody will ever know but I wouldn't be at all surprised if he stabilised the club and turned them back into a regular top-half Premier League team.

  • Comment number 33.

    If there is one thing that proves that Chris was the right man for the Job compare the reaction to his sacking to that of his appointment. In 18 months he went from not realy wanted to the man huge numbers of fans are willing to protest about his departure. Not only that by leaving chris to it and keeping his head down some people almost were willing to give ashley grudging respect for making what was a good business and football decision against the crowds wishes.

    Now we get someone put in associated with the so called cockney mafia Ashley is back to square one with the fans and the manager success's will be built on chris's and failures all his own so I cant see him lasting the 5 years unless silverware flows like water, and that is always unlikley to happen.

    Chris good job mate, we wish you well in the future and I expect to see your name mentioned the next time a premiership job is made vacant.

    Although

  • Comment number 34.

    no. 32 - thank the lord Nolan is articulate and handles himself well in post match interviews. He deserves a huge bonus for that.
    The world's going mad.
    And it's about time the 'Chief' football writer started to get into the ribs of people rather than sucking up to them.

  • Comment number 35.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 36.

    32. At 11:23am on 12 Dec 2010, theguywithnousername wrote:

    Whether he'll do a better or worse job than Hughton would have is something nobody will ever know but I wouldn't be at all surprised if he stabilised the club and turned them back into a regular top-half Premier League team.

    ---------------

    Hughton had and was already managing this.

  • Comment number 37.

    Ok, i've read the whole article, then read the 1st comment by Unitedlifer and I dont need to read anymore; cause that quite simply sums it up..

    Pardew is not out of the woods at all! It was Hughton's team and tactics. Until January has come and gone no one can really say he's alright!

    My opinion is that some of the players unhappy about how the club is being run may leave in Jan, that and Pardew implimenting his own trainng and tactics by then will all but ruin the club.

    Winning against a messed up Liverpool side days after his appointment (with no time at all to evaluate players, change tactics and training) may easy a couple of minds about the situation but these people are the fools that cant see what is going to go down over the next couple of months.

  • Comment number 38.

    Means nothing any team could beat us when we play away

  • Comment number 39.

    Speaking as an Everton supporter, I can only wish that we had a manager like Pardew in charge, who as he says, sets his teams out on the front foot looking to win football matches.

    I can also only wish we had a manager like Chris Hughton in charge though for that matter, or Owen Coyle, or Ian Holloway, or Roberto Di Matteo etc etc etc

  • Comment number 40.

    Lot's of magnanimous gestures like Barton dedicating his award to Hughton and Pardew not taking all the credit. Someone pass me a hankie.

  • Comment number 41.

    Phil- Alan Pardew must have thought christmas had come early yesterday after that result! Certainly it will give Pardew some breathing space, but in all honesty I suspect the result would have been the same had Chris Hughton still been in-charge! Cannot quite figure out what Mike Ashley is about with this appointment, maybe because of the relationship said to exist between the two, Pardew has been brought in by Ashley to 'do a specific job' - however what that job might be has not been defined fully as yet; only that it will take someone with more PL experience than (apparently) Chris Hughton had!
    Looking on the 'darkside' and all the losses Ashley has suffered with Newcastle, then may be with players like Carroll attracting so much attention he is looking to recoup some of these losses on the transfer market - if so Newcastle fans beware, your worst nightmares might be just around the corner!

  • Comment number 42.

    Another good article there phil.

    I for one think that alan pardew has conducted himself exceptional well over the past few days. It is not his fault that ashley has treated hughton so Appallingly.

    I'm so glad he never got his hands on tottenham hotspur. I would hate to think what kind of mess they would be in right now if he had.

    I have a huge amount of respect for hughton and what he has achieved in such a short space of time, and was quite sad to see him leave spurs after all the good work he had for us whilst he was there. I'm sure that he will always been welcomed with open arms back there :)

    Although I personally don't rate alan that highly as he has never been that successful, I do wish him good luck and hope that he brings many more good matches like the one against liverpool for the many newcastle fans out there. I think we all know and understand that they have suffered for far too long, and the premiership is never quite the same without them.

    Of course, safe to say I hope that when you face spurs you lose ;)

  • Comment number 43.

    Wow. Good article, some excellent comments, and even a very gratious comment from a Spurs fan. Accurate comments about Pardew etc, and an amusing comment about Pardew refered to as "Curbishley" (made me laugh anyway)
    This can't be an article about Newcastle for God's sake.
    Where's the sneering spite ? The anti-Newcastle myths and lies ?
    There hasn't even been the Mick Dennis-ism so over-used by rival fans (who clearly don't know what the word means !) - "delusional"
    Not used to this......

  • Comment number 44.

    In the previous blog regarding Alan Pardew and Newcastle, I ruthlessly undermined Pardew becaused I was extermely sceptical of him bringing success. But - I was wrong. Fantastic start for Pardew but it is too early to judge him, we will wait and see ...

  • Comment number 45.

    As i said on phil's previous blog, pardew was outstanding at Saints.

    Do not underestimate this man's motivational skills or his eye for a transfer, Saints got 83 points and their first trophy for decades out of him in one season and he only joined just before it started with hardly any players!

  • Comment number 46.

    What baffles me on this is why was Pardew given a 5 and a half year conract - supposedly negotiated by Pardew. If Mourino or similar hd come along and asked for that then fine. Here we have an out of work manager, whose PL experience was over three years ago and has been sacked in his last three jobs. If he asked for 5 1/2 year we would all tell him to get lost. There's obviously more to this that meets the eye but as with all things Ashley we will never find out - we are just fans after all and not worth considering.

    Of course we know they are not real cockneys but the club is run from london and thats near enough for us northern souls for a jibe, berkshie mafia or southern mafia doesn't sound so good!

  • Comment number 47.

    I don't think that Pardew will be successful in the long run, but I was impressed with the victory against Liverpool. As Villa found to their cost, Newcastle are not to be underestimated at St. James' Park.

    http://www.inofftheghost.wordpress.com

  • Comment number 48.

    I still can't believe how Ashley chops and changes his managers...

    Have a read of http://upper90magazine.wordpress.com/2010/12/08/newcastle-and-the-managerial-circus/

  • Comment number 49.

    I'm glad to see that people are still getting out on the tiles in NewCastle please.

  • Comment number 50.

    Its a toon - spurs love-in! lol

  • Comment number 51.

    well here we go again,i wish CHRIS HUGHTON all the best for the future,lets give ALAN PARDEW a chance,if by the end of the season we are in the mire,then we can pass judgement,and lets hope ASHLEY and his backroom staff leave the manager to get on with it.

  • Comment number 52.

    You said

    Is an out-of-work manager going to turn down the chance to take charge of a Premier League club simply because the previous incumbent has been cruelly dispensed with?

    but in the previous paragraph you link to an article that says he was approached 7 days before Chris Hughton was sacked! Not exactly a job vacancy then was it??

  • Comment number 53.

    hi just listened to roy hodgsons interview,cant believe what ive just heard,so much for wanting to get into the champions lge.hodgson said for liverpool to be wanting to be in the top half of the league it was a bad defeat.where have all the we will do it this season gone.when i think how or what theshanks or bob paisly,even king kenny would have said after the defeats.i am not sure who said it last night lawro or hanson that liverpool results lately have been relegation form.so can the real liverpool start winning.all the best steve

  • Comment number 54.

    After an immensely infuriating week, I'm ready to get behind Pardew now. I hope, like myself, a lot of toon fans got their anger and frustration out on Saturday with the protests and will back the manager now. I don't think our season will change a lot, I think it all depends on what Pardew does in January.

    The problem is Newcastle were always going to have an inconsistent season; most fans would have taken staying up and when we did lose matches, it was a little frustrating but I always reminded myself we had a talented manager, it was our first season back and we're looking towards the future, because Hughton was an excellent man manager and motivator. Now, with Pardew at the helm, even though I think we'll carry on in much the same vein as under Hughton, he'll get judged for every bad result. I'm worried about the next couple of years - the stability and optimistm under Hughton has gone and our fantastic team spirit could be disrupted.

    Having said that, lets get behind Pardew because like it or not, he's our manager now. Forget about his past experiences because managers can change; Look at Ian Holloway, before he took over Blackpool he'd been sacked for taking Leicester down to League One. He spent time out of the game, looked at how he could improve and now he's doing great. Pardew is in no way the popular choice but he's saying all the right things, we've got a good group of players, all they need is our support.

  • Comment number 55.

    fickle media, stupid barcodes, one day all bad, now all good, give us a break

  • Comment number 56.

    # 39. Cifaretto
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As an Everton supporter I literally cannot believe what you have just said.

    I remember Pardew winning a game 1-0 at goodison and then arrogantly belittle Everton by claiming that West Ham had "taught us a footballing lesson".

    12 months later, he was sacked, where Moyesie was taking us back into Europe. One of the best experiences i've had as an Everton fan was in 2007, McFadden hitting that last minute winner against Charlton...why? Because it wiped the smug smile off the face of Pardew and quite rightly put him in his place.

    Subsequent comments made on MOTD2 and rumours of his pursuit of this job give the measure of the man. Arrogant with absoultely nothing to back it up.

  • Comment number 57.

    A great start for Pardew though he claim little credit for it and rightly did so. I just want to say well done to the Newcastle fans who attended the game and protested. There were protests outside the ground though when the game kicked off the whole ground seemed to be getting behind the team. The obvious anti Ashley chants were heard but in the most part the side were well supported and we gave the media who love to stick the knife into us no reason to. A great response to the loss of Chris Houghton. Though he has been dreadfully treated, hand on heart he probably wasnt the man to take us forward to where we want (want not deserve) to be which is contesting for trophies and trying to get into the Europa League in the short term. I dont think Pardew is either but we need to get behind the players, and new manager and hope this works out for the best. HTL

  • Comment number 58.

    Congratulations to Newcastle on a deserved victory.

    With regards to Liverpool, Hodgson is taking us backwards with his negative approach, lack of ambition and general incompetence. As is usual for a Hodgson team he instructs them to sit back and hit aimless long balls in the general direction of Torres. The defence sits back which played perfectly into the hands of Newcastle with the aerial threat of Carroll. Torres is looking increasingly frustrated with been isolated upfront.

    Rafa Benitez did a great job as Liverpool manager but Hodgson is quickly destroying the strong foundations left behind. Hodgsons signings of Poulson, Cole, Konchesky, Jones and Mereilles have all been poor (In fairness Mereilles has had some decent games when Hodgson actually manages to play him in his right position). We have been embarrased by Everton and Man Utd our two biggest rivals (and Hodgson was satisfied after the Everton game saying it was the best performance we have had under him!) We have lost to Blackpool, Stoke, Newcastle and Northampton. Hodgson is an absolute disaster he has to leave NOW!

  • Comment number 59.

    "Although it's a late blog Ahsan is right, the blogs about Man U/Liverpool are more popular, seems BBC posters are just about as biased as they claim Phil to be. It's just a bit frustrating when you feel your team deserves a mention and they don't get it"

    I agree with FoggyNUFC, as an ardent Birmingham City supporter, it is very rare for them to get a mention; in fact it seems like the supporters have to riot and throw flares at each other to get a blog.

  • Comment number 60.

    I've watched a lot of Newcastle this year and it cannot be underestimated how important Nolan and Barton are to the show. As much in what they bring to the side as what their replacements the woeful Guthrie and brainless Routledge fail to.

    One thing that continues to surprise me is the continued selection of Ameobi. I lost count of the amount of times Carroll won the ball in the air only for Ameobi's lack of pace or application to let him down. The introduction of Ranger sparked them back into life and he must surely come into contention to start some games. He's got pace and strength and reads Carroll's game well.

    At the back Taylor & Campbell deserve some credit after their horror show last weekend and given the amount of football they have played. It will be interesting to see what Pardew does when the suspended duo of Colocini and Williamson return. They were solid for most part but woeful at Bolton.

    If Pardew can keep it ticking along without upsetting anyone and welcome Ben Arfa into the team then they should be a safe bet for survival.

  • Comment number 61.

    Part of the problem with responses is the article is burried down the page when surely it should be one of the main items. Garth Crookes team of the week surely doesn't need to be there!

  • Comment number 62.

    the "tools" may have been CH's but the tactics were distinctly different in that we were pushed right up close man to man, in the face of LFC players, not allowing them to settle on the ball, not hanging off an extra yard or two like always under CH.

    A noticeable change straight away.

  • Comment number 63.

    Re: 21. At 09:23am on 12 Dec 2010, trevor4491 wrote:
    Why do all those Jocks keep referring to Ashley et al as "Cockneys"? Not one of them is from east London let alone being born within the sound of Bow bells.
    _________________________________________________________________________
    My following comments will make me seem pedantic in the extreme, but the above comment is misguided by a common misconception. Many people assume the term ‘born within the sound of the Bow Bells’ refers to the area, Bow (and a church within that locale), however the Bow Bells actually are the bells of St. Mary-le-Bow church which is located in the City Of London, not the East End.
    Further to the above, considering that the bow bells can be heard in all directions to varying degrees, a person living in any area of London (i.e. the East, West North or South) could be classified as a Cockney. The reason that it is mainly people from the East End (and to a degree South East London) who are considered cockney is that the ‘Bow bells’ can be heard to a greater extent in these areas and linguistically, the accent / dialect associated with Cockneys was traditionally heard in these areas of London to a greater extent than in other areas of London. Thus not all cockneys are inner city East Londoners, but nearly all inner city East Londoners are (technically) cockneys, whether they consider themselves to be or not.

  • Comment number 64.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 65.

    Well, good start for Pardew - let's hope that the rest of his reign follows in a similar fashion. Can't say that I'm impressed with the whole thing though - he was hardly "the best man for the job".

 

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