- Premier League
Pardew will boost Toon squad in January
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew believes he needs a larger squad by the end of the January transfer window to help steer the side to safety, and admits that the team have sorely missed Yohan Cabaye.
The Magpies head into the final fixtures before Christmas just two points clear of the relegation zone, and while Pardew admits that there could be exits in January he is adamant that Newcastle must buy more players than they sell.
"It is a difficult window, but I think we would like to get - definitely - one player in and not lose anybody," Pardew told the Newcastle Evening Chronicle. "It could be we lose a player, you never know.
"I lost Andy Carroll in this window and in a situation that was not too dissimilar to what I am in now two years ago, maybe it was a bit better.
"However, if that is the case then we need two players and if we lose two then we need three.
"That will be difficult in this window. I cannot see two players leaving but you can never count on one."
Newcastle have won just once in their nine Premier League games since October, with Pardew admitting that strikers Demba Ba and Pappiss Cisse have struggled without the midfield influence of Cabaye and Hatem Ben Arfa for long periods so far this term.
Pardew recognised in the summer that the side would need a larger squad to deal with their European and domestic campaigns, but accepts some of the blame for not managing to bring someone in.
"Myself, Mike [Ashley, Newcastle owner] and Derek [Llambias, managing director] all agree we should have bought one more senior player in here," Pardew admitted. "For whatever reason it did not happen.
"The owner has great faith in my ability and I have to reward that with what I think when we make an error and say we have made a mistake.
"He accepts that and as a team we have to learn from it - it is a collective thing and we have to take that all on the chin. We got that wrong."
Cabaye has been out since November after undergoing double surgery to treat a groin injury and is not due to return until February while Ben Arfa is out until the New Year, which has put added pressure on Newcastle's misfiring front pair.
"When you have a creative force like Yohan Cabaye missing in the midfield it causes you a problem," Pardew added.
"I think in this particular year they have missed the creativeness of Hatem Ben Arfa for periods and Cabaye.
"A lot of goals which Cisse scored last year were assisted by Cabaye and I think he has suffered mainly from his absence.
"Demba has too, but can they play as a pair? Of course they can. Are they playing well at the moment as a pair? No, they are probably not, but we have to keep working at it because they are two big assets for us."