Former Crystal Palace player Alan Pardew offers support to Eagles


The Newcastle United manager said the club is close to his heart


By Bruce Archer

Newcastle United Manager Alan Pardew has offered his old club and Ian Holloway some words of sympathy following his own experience of battling difficult situations at the foot of the Premier League.

Pardew played 128 times for Crystal Palace between 1987-1991 and has managed the likes of Reading, West Ham, Charlton and Southampton before his current post, all sides who have drifted between the Premier League and the Championship in recent years.

Born in Wimbledon, Pardew played for local non-league sides including Corinthian Casuals, Epsom and Ewell, and Whyteleafe before he turned professional.

Speaking on Sky Sports’ Goals on Sunday, Pardew said: “They’re a great club and they’re close to my heart, obviously I played there and was born not far from there, so I’m sort of integrated and I’ve got a close eye on Ian and Palace.

“Hopefully their results will improve. I think they’ve been competitive, it just looks like that cutting edge they need, them goals, if they can just get a couple of goals, and a good win, they’ll be alright.

“They’ve got a good base to the team, but they’re a great club.”

The Eagles have had a tough start to the season and sit second bottom from seven games with just three points, their only victory coming at home to bottom side Sunderland on August 31.

An area for frustration for some fans has been Holloway’s altering of the attacking system which comes naturally to his squad, and one that also comes naturally to him.  

Pardew however believes Holloway is right to try out different styles of play early on in the season to work out the best way to gain enough points to stay up, even if the return so far has left them short of the pack and already four points behind 17th placed side Fulham.

He added: “I think Ian’s bright enough to know that his managerial style has always been the same, and that is to have a go. You always have to admire that about Ian Holloway’s teams.

“I think on occasion, even somebody as positive as him, you’re going to protect your players because you can’t open up the pitch against everybody and literally have your wingers flying down the wing because these big teams will cut you to pieces.

“So there’s certain games where he will have to be very cautious but there are games when they can open it up and play with a bit more verve and hopefully get the results. He has to call that from game to game and the mood of his players and the personalities in his dressing room to determine the style he needs to bring to get a win.”

After a week off for the international break, Holloway’s men are faced with two home games against London opposition as they welcome Fulham and Arsenal to Selhurst Park on October 21 and 26.

Photo courtesy of Rothko1, with thanks.

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