I have sat, if not in support, then on the fence for some time in the Pardew debate. This has, I have to confess, been mainly because I really don’t see who will come in and replace him. However, the time surely has come to find out. Our manager has on too many occasions failed to inspire the players under his charge (possibly in some cases to completely alienating them). Whilst I’ve felt sympathy for his obvious lack of control over who is in his squad his main job must be to gel those available into a team—something that he seems to struggle to do.
That isn’t my main reason for finally joining the calls for his head. That is his inability to find anything that works for the players he has. Pardew persists in playing a formation which, at least under him, leaves us struggling to find shots let alone goals. An over crowded midfield have no focus with little deep threat. When midfielders do find themselves forward it is all too often wide with nothing in the box. And Pardew’s plan B appears to be nothing but like for like changes (baffling often in the fullback position) which result in no variation to the attacking play which has failed to work. All this is leaving aside his apparent inability to coach a defence, or even a decent free kick.
Surely, somebody can do better than that.
What I really want is Ashley to sell to somebody who actually cares about this club, this way of life. What I will settle for is a manager with some ideas.