Is Alan Pardew Still The Crystal Palace Manager Because He Scored A Goal 26-Years-Ago?
Posted by Featured Articles | Published on November 22, 2016
It’s an interesting question that really has divided opinions in South London; ‘How has Alan Pardew still got a job at Crystal Palace?’
A recent report shows that Palace are now officially the worst club in England’s top 4 divisions in 2016 when it comes to a points to games ratio, Pardew’s men have fared a pitiful 0.71 points per game, below MK Dons and Aston Villa. I think it would be safe to say that any other Premier League manager would have been shown the door by now. If Alan Pardew wasn’t a club legend, would he still have a job?
Over the past 11 months, I’ve seen Palace fans divide in a way I never thought I would. I remember Palace fans who said they would never become like Newcastle fans, now look, it can be unbearable at times. I look on social media and there’s only one subject ‘Pardew in or Pardew out?’ Back in March, Palace had accumulated 4 points from a possible 33, now 9 months later, things don’t seem to have improved at all. Sitting 1 point above the relegation zone with 22 points out of a possible 93, it’s hard to see that Pardew will be able to revive a sinking ship.
I’ve backed Pardew as the right man for the job for quite a while now, I’ve been patient, waited for this bad run to blow over; I hate to see clubs sack their manager for no apparent reason. Look at Allardyce at Blackburn, it was under completely different circumstances, however a decent manager, doing a decent job, was sacked and it was completely undeserved.
And this is why I make the comparison between Pardew’s position at Palace and Big Sam’s at Blackburn. Alan Pardew, up until now, has done a solid job, like it or not. Our first season in the Premier League resulted in 13 wins, our second was exactly the same. Then last season, we won 11 Premier League games, just two less than the previous two seasons, however ,we reached an FA Cup final to make up for it.
Additionally, I’m not sure how much more some Palace fans realistically expect, to be honest. Apart from surviving relegation, maybe pushing for mid-table and the occasional cup run. Sometimes I think we’re getting ahead of ourselves, it can be easy to forget we are still one of the smallest clubs in the league, a lot of neutrals might say we’re an overachieving Championship club.
That doesn’t mean to say I don’t understand where these anti-Pardew fans are coming from, just look at his track record. We have real reason to be worried about the drop. Although I think there are definitely 3 worse sides than us in the league, you have to assume West Ham will pick up their form given the quality they have at their dispense and you never quite know with Sunderland, the masters of the great escape. You’d think Burnley’s momentum would slow and they may well be dragged into the battle but their current home form is looking brilliant and going into the season that’s what they would have been looking for, solid home performances to keep them up. And obviously you would expect Middlesbrough to join the fight eventually. Our 2016 record has been unacceptable, I acknowledge that, and there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel as of yet.
Nonetheless, you look at the games we’ve not picked up points in recently; Man City, were we really expecting anything from that? And actually, individual errors cost us the game. I thought we were unlucky against Burnley, not to get at least a point. We’ve had Liverpool, who are playing some of the best football in the league. We lost to the champions of England and West Ham. All that off the back of a 5 game unbeaten run.
I also think you have to look at the candidates that could potentially replace Pardew at the helm, I’m not really open to the idea of Sam Allardyce taking over, Jurgen Klinsmann has just been sacked and is probably the most realistic replacement. I can’t think of too many more candidates that could credibly take the job.
I say give Pardew the next few games, we have 3 extremely winnable games coming up in Swansea, Southampton and Hull. If we come out of those games with less than 5 points, I will re-evaluate where I stand but for now, I will continue to back Pardew, more out of hope than anything else. The hope he can steer us back in the right direction. He did some good business in the summer and we looked very good at the back end of August until the start of October.
I suppose the next few weeks will have a huge influence on Pardew’s future and only time will tell. Being truthful, I don’t think Pardew is going to revive this, this could well be the end of the road. I would rather he left now and we all remember him for the good things he’s done for us, like that goal in 1990, like taking us to an FA Cup final, saving us from relegation and putting the foundations down for us to become an established Premier League side. You also have to consider that Pardew will forever be just 1 loss away from criticism, it doesn’t matter if we went the next 5 games unbeaten, the next defeat would trigger the media, the anti-Pardew fans and obviously the Geordies. It looks a long road back for Super Alan Pardew, mission impossible some may say.
Is Alan Pardew still the Palace manager because he scored a goal 26 years ago?