- Premier League
Pardew doesn't fear Newcastle axe
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew insists he never feared for his job, even when he reached his lowest ebb on Tyneside following the home defeat against Reading last month.
The tidal wave of goodwill Pardew had built up following last season's fifth place finish appeared to have washed ashore as he was jeered by the St James' Park faithful following a 2-1 home reverse against the Royals that deepened Newcastle's relegation fears.
Yet Pardew insists he never suspected the backing from his chairman was waning and he was duly handed a bumper transfer kitty in the January transfer window to confirm as much, with his new signings helping to inspire back-to-back wins against Aston Villa and Chelsea.
"It's rare in football to have the position that even with the results I've had, the message from upstairs was that I was going to be retained as manager," he told reporters ahead of Saturday's game at Tottenham.
"Perhaps our fans weren't quite as happy about that at the time, but I have to try and reward the club for the backing the gave me now. So far, we've got two great results and we have to build on that.
"It's been a difficult season for us. For myself, it's been a question of making sure we're consistent in my message, being honest with our fans and that is what we have done.
"We haven't been good enough and we've been saying that. Now we think we have got a team that's good enough and we have to back it up with results."
Managing director Derek Llambias has won lavish praise from Pardew for his success in sealing five transfers in January and he has told the Newcastle Chronicle that the notion of replacing Pardew never crossed the mind of club officials.
"The club has never had stability and it needs it," he stated. "This is too big a club not to have stability. Do we want to find ourselves in a situation when we have a manager for 15 or 20 years? Absolutely. If the manager works, we work. You cannot get any better than that."
Meanwhile Pardew has hinted that he will continue his player recruitment drive in the summer transfer window, as he looks to bolster his squad options for the long-term.
"We need to strengthen the under-belly of this football club and we need to do that this summer," added the Newcastle boss. "If we can do that, then we are going to be well-set for next year because we have got some very good players on our books now."