- Premier League
Defiant Pardew makes Newcastle plans
Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew says he is making plans for summer transfer deals despite his future being clouded by uncertainty.
The 52-year-old is under pressure after five successive defeats and has admitted "more than half" of the supporters want him to be sacked.
He faces a summer review of his performance with the club but has refused to bow to fan pressure and walk away from the club, claiming he is focusing on transfer targets that have been identified - with owner Mike Ashley, chief scout Graham Carr and managing director Lee Charnley - for next season.
"We've looked at a couple things last week that might be opportunities for us," Pardew told the Sunderland Echo.
"And we also looked at a couple players for the summer. That's an area we need to get to, but we'll be in a good position in the summer, I think. But we need to get there first."
Pardew, who will return to the touchline against Arsenal after serving a seven-game ban for butting Hull City's David Meyler, is surprised by Newcastle's recent form.
"It is hard to believe really, when we beat Palace (in March) that we would end up like this," Pardew told the Evening Chronicle.
Ashley will hold his annual review with Pardew after the final game of the season, but Pardew could be facing a struggle to keep his job if Newcastle drop out of the Premier League's top 10.
They are ninth but have only a two-point advantage of Stoke and three-point gap to Crystal Palace and striker Shola Ameobi feels the squad needs strengthening.
"We need quality players and we need a quality squad as well," he told BBC Newcastle. "That is something the club have to put right for next season."