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NEW (Old) ARTICLE: Pardew; A Revisit to his Charlton Failure

So Wednesday will see us reaquainted once again with ol' Big Nose.

It is particularly difficult to look back objectively when you have a dislike for someone, But seeing 'The Superior One' go on to pick up positive recognition elsewhere makes us ask the question again, what the hell went wrong here? Was he as bad as we thought, or are we exaggerating?

With that in mind, below is the article i wrote in Novemeber 2009. Seems like a lifetime ago now, but i think (hope) when looking back with a bit of mileage that it was a relatively fair assessment at the time. Grateful for thoughts....

PARDEW'S FAILURE TO HIT THE HEADLINES

"I will be doing everything in my power to inspire what we've got here. I've always been able to operate well without big money. I am very focused, my philosophy is very complicated with what I do and I need people who are good enough to be able to go along with that. It's going to be about fighting, digging in, and winning games". - Alan Pardew, Dec 2006.

Richard Murray and his board of directors took a huge sigh of relief. A disastrous period of uncertainty had seen the reliable, well-drilled Charlton ship start to veer off course. Alan Pardew would emerge as the right appointment at the right time to lead that ship back into smoother waters. The much-heralded returning hero; the man Fergie was tipping to go on to great things, and seen by the Addickted and the wider football world as a managerial coup for little old Charlton.

If relegation from the Premiership was eventually to befall upon us, there was strong belief that we had the right man to stabilise our club and help us rebuild it correctly. Even come back stronger. None of those directors, or the 20,000 plus who continue to painfully file through The Valley turnstiles could have foreseen the mess that was to follow.

Relegation came and went. While Tottenham hammered the final nail into our Premiership coffin, there was no anger at The Valley. The supporters stood defiant as one, and proudly sang at noise levels that have not been repeated since. Pardew would rebuild. Of course, it was accepted that high earners and better players would leave, but there was equal belief that so too would under-performers and the inconsistency that had let the club down. Pardew, with his solid track record, would lead us back as a leaner, hungrier side, playing organised, offensive high-tempo football.

Funds were provided, decent funds for a relegated side. Big money was spent on players such as Luke Varney, Zheng Zhi, Izale McLeod and Paddy McCarthy. Exciting young foreign imports such as Therry Racon, Jose Semedo and Yassin Moutuouakil were brought in to complete our high-tempo, quality approach. Punts were taken on the likes of Chris Dickson and Dean Sinclair, non-league rough diamonds simply in need of a good polish and a rub of Pardew magic. He was going to become the Championship Wenger, carving out an admired team that would blitz the division with the offensive approach that Reading did in recent years.

Our huge squad and top-two budget guided us to second in the table by November, but performances were unconvincing. Promise had been shown, but the side had failed to gel, prompting frequent changes to the starting eleven. We accepted it was a new side, it would take time to reach its peak as individuals and team shape became fully acquainted. We would be a side that will grow stronger and dominant in the second half of the season as we become more organised.

In reality, the opposite occurred. Poor performances led to panic. Panic led to more team changes and questionable further arrivals, permanently or on short-term loans. The more changes made, the more erratic performances become. With our top-two budget, we whimpered into a pitiful eleventh place as the second half of the season fell apart. We ended the season not having a clue what our best formation, tactics or individuals were.

Pardew's large ego was hugely dented we were told. The mistakes would make him a stronger, better manager. Yet everywhere we turned the same mistakes were repeated. Players were chopped and changed, more non-league gambles were brought in to no effect, and questionable loan signings continued to arrive in their droves.

We fell into the bottom three of the Championship, embarrassed by a Barnsley side lacking quality but huge in endeavour and determination. The decision should have arrived then but a stay of execution was granted, though the lack of public support from the top club showed the obvious split at board level; his job was being maintained on a thin thread.

After soul-searching, changing training, tactics, and once again individuals, the slide could not be arrested and we went on to concede ten goals in the next three games. The end of Pardew's reign shows a desperate side who won just nine of their last forty one games, five of their last twenty eight. A side that did not win two games in a row for 50 weeks and counting.

So where did Pardew go wrong ?

Let’s state now that it is never easy for any manager that has to sell his best players. But Pardew was given more than adequate time and funds to get things right. Thirty five players arrived at The Valley in his time; some have left already while few have shined. More worryingly, virtually none have improved in their time here.

The over-riding feeling for me is that at no stage did he get to grips with what the Championship is about. Success in this league is based on organisation, commitment and endeavour; resolute in defence, denying space and taking chances when they occur. Pardew appeared to have too much belief in his own ability, that he could carve out a young Premiership style side who would go straight to level three before they have learnt and mastered levels one and two. When this failed, he appeared bereft of ideas to correct the situation, and failed to learn from things that went wrong. Virtually all the gambles and changes he made spectacularly failed to come off.

Pardew did not become a bad manager overnight, and is likely to go on and be a success elsewhere. But there is no hiding the fact he got things stunningly wrong here, and a change was vital for all parties. As someone calling for his dismissal for the past few weeks, the end comes with no sense of relief or satisfaction. Just pure sadness at how far we have fallen so quickly, and how disorganised as a club we currently appear.

Where now for Charlton is a debate for tomorrow. For now, the sad legacy of Pardew's reign and our decline is that his dismissal won't even make the back page of the Sunday papers.


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Comments

  • Great article and sums up very well of what went on.

    Paolo Monteiro, Martin Christensen, Dean Sinclair and Dorian Smith still give me nightmares.

    On the note of Dorian Smith, how his transfer never got picked up on by any governing bodies baffles me.

    Read this article, dodgy doesn't cut it!

    http://www.charlton.vitalfootball.co.uk/article.asp?a=102187
  • ed. @I-SAW-POUSO-PLAY I've removed that link as it opens a serious amount of ad spam with it
  • edited September 2015
    I dislike the undertone that we are fickle, and thats why we don't like him, for that alone I intensley dislike him, then there's the rest..
  • I remember vividly singing Super, super Al before he had arrived, even more vividly were the groans and sighs a year later

    sad times
  • He seems totally unprepared to shoulder any blame for the mess we got in - according to him we were relegated because of Darren Bent getting injured and having no money and being forced to sell Andy Reid screwed up his championship chances - the arrogance of the man is extraordinary.

    From the Croydon Advertiser:
    ALAN Pardew has revealed how tough it was financially for him when he was manager of Charlton Athletic.

    The Crystal Palace boss, who comes up against the Addicks in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday night at Selhurst Park, has remembered how an injury to striker Darren Bent played a big part in not being able to save Charlton from Premier League relegation in 2007.

    And then at Christmas that year in the Championship, financial implications meant Pardew had no choice but to allow one of his best players to be sold.

    "I went in there and I think they had around ten points or so at Christmas - it was a tough call," he said.

    "We got ourselves out of the relegation area. We had a great run and there was a good attitude. But I lost Darren Bent (to injury) and it was crucial.

    "When we got relegated, the impact of that relegation wasn't really made clear to me when I joined how financially damaging it was.

    "Therefore we were always struggling after that.

    "We sold our captain (Andy Reid) at Christmas. We had to do things like that and it made it difficult."
  • edited September 2015
    razil said:

    I dislike the undertone that we are fickle, and thats why we don't like him, for that alone I intensley dislike him, then there's the rest..

    I intensely dislike him due to him, not the results from when he was manager. That just endorses it.

    Remember soon after him being appointed a Q&A meeting was organised at The Valley. Big turnout, I remember one asking a question and Pardew really sarcastically answering and really belittling the fan. Can't remember what the question was, but remember thinking at the time that it was no way a manager should be addressing a fan publicly.

    But that was Pardew. Same with the feng sui changes he insisted on at the training ground. Everything was always about him.

  • Funds were provided, decent funds for a relegated side. Big money was spent on players such as Luke Varney, Zheng Zhi, Izale McLeod and Paddy McCarthy. Exciting young foreign imports such as Therry Racon, Jose Semedo and Yassin Moutuouakil were brought in to complete our high-tempo, quality approach. Punts were taken on the likes of Chris Dickson and Dean Sinclair, non-league rough diamonds simply in need of a good polish and a rub of Pardew magic. He was going to become the Championship Wenger, carving out an admired team that would blitz the division with the offensive approach that Reading did in recent years.

    I remember this so well. You've evoked that feeling of optimism quite effectively!
  • razil said:

    I dislike the undertone that we are fickle, and thats why we don't like him, for that alone I intensley dislike him, then there's the rest..

    I intensely dislike him due to him, not the results from when he was manager. That just endorses it.

    Remember soon after him being appointed a Q&A meeting was organised at The Valley. Big turnout, I remember one asking a question and Pardew really sarcastically answering and really belittling the fan. Can't remember what the question was, but remember thinking at the time that it was no way a manager should be addressing a fan publicly.

    But that was Pardew. Same with the feng sui changes he insisted on at the training ground. Everything was always about him.
    Yes I remember that. He was a cock.
    Now he's a bit like a pantomime dame villain as far as I'm concerned. Except that I still really hate him:-)
    Good ol Alan.

  • edited September 2015
    Great article AFKA and still stands the tests of time (5 years). How we were duped, but I am happy that we found him out, but not without a lot of pain that took the club a long time to recover from. It's still painful now watching him on the box with his Palace tie on. Like the ex-wife who you can't move on from.
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  • I might get a bit of stick for this, but as much as we didn't like him in the end and as much as he has a hugely inflated ego, seeing as he has been reasonably successful at virtually all his other clubs, was he maybe the right manager at the wrong time?
  • We were 2 wins away from staying up weren't we? How different would life be?
  • I might get a bit of stick for this, but as much as we didn't like him in the end and as much as he has a hugely inflated ego, seeing as he has been reasonably successful at virtually all his other clubs, was he maybe the right manager at the wrong time?

    Maybe. But a straw poll of Reading, West Ham, Southampton & Newcastle fans might be telling to how they describe "reasonably successful."
  • That was a spot on article AFKA.
  • The company car story still makes my blood boil. He is an arse, simple as!
  • The company car story still makes my blood boil. He is an arse, simple as!

    My favourite Pardew story ever was him sending a chicken breast back to the kitchen as he wanted the chef to slice it.

    Nothing will ever beat that.
  • Please tell these stories...
  • The company car story still makes my blood boil. He is an arse, simple as!

    What's the company car story?
  • edited September 2015
    Said when he left that as a manager ge wasn't as good as many fans thought he was when he joined nor as bad as many fans thought he was when a left.

    Having met him more than a few times as a person is he is an Onanist of the first order.
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  • Oh for god sake, I just googled that word on my work pc. And I don't think its the first time!!
  • Curb_It said:

    Oh for god sake, I just googled that word on my work pc. And I don't think its the first time!!

    @Curb_It I deliberately used that word because I remember you doing the same thing about 5 years ago when I described him in the same way. : - )
  • Big nosed twat
  • Can we have more stories please. Ta.
  • Curb_It said:

    Can we have more stories please. Ta.

    Can remember him talking up a player one month and then a few weeks or months later wanting him moved on regardless of the loss made.

    He used to just lose interest in players and I think he just lost interest in Charlton. Same as at Newcastle.
  • the car story i heard was he was shown round the mercedes (or something like that) garage at the price range the club had for him the £40-50k motors and he said no thanks i want something higher end £80-100k motor ... varney or murray said we've never had a request like that before and pardews response was well you've never had a manager like me before

    something along those lines , the cocksure twat fancied himself a bit
  • Didn't he just order the car and told the show room to bill it to Charlton Athletic and trot off?
  • Couldn't possibly comment... Ipswich away was his absolute nadir, Lita and Zheng playing as part of a 4-4-1-1 that we had never tried before, despite them being introduced 3 days previously. People management not his forte. Moutaw...
  • Haven't read all of this, but the story I heard about how he ripped up plans to improve the changing facilities for the youngsters at Sparrows Lane and diverted the money to have his own private shower room built never ceases to amaze me.

    Absolute knobber.
  • At a Q&A with Garry Nelson once, he seemed to imply that Pards as a player was a tad full himself.
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