When Alan Pardew was appointed as manager at Newcastle United, many of the Toon faithful where underwhelmed, to say the least. I confess that I was among that number; I had been aware of Alan Pardew most specifically from his time at Charlton Athletic, which saw the club relegated, fail to achieve promotion and further slip into the relegation zone in the Championship all in the space of 3 seasons. Perhaps symptomatic of the stereotypical NUFC fan, I felt that surely there was a big name out there that was just champing at the bit to take the reins at my beloved club and lead us back to the heights of the Champions League. Apparently this manager was not out there... at least not as such.
In an interview with The Chronicle yesterday (my birthday, coincidentally... perhaps this little tidbit was Alan Pardew's birthday gift to me!), Alan Pardew credited part of his current success with the club to management techniques that he lightly borrowed from Sir Bobby Robson protege Jose Mourinho:
Pardew – who spent time studying Mourinho’s training methods when the Portuguese was at Chelsea and still keeps in touch with him – told the Chronicle: "I used to watch Chelsea regularly because it was on my doorstep.
"It was when Jose Mourinho was there. There were things that I was seeing that I hadn’t seen in English football before.
"Some of the managerial traits that he was bringing I’ve learned from.
"And I can’t help but say I’ve nicked a few of them."
--From The Chronicle
If the tremendous record of success for the Portuguese in club management isn't enough to make you step back and say "hey that's cool", the fingerprint of Sir Bobby that comes along with such an influence (and continuing contact, it has to be noted) is enough to illogically raise Alan Pardew in my estimation. From time to time, it is nice to see a shout to Geordie influence in the Londoner no matter how oblique. In addition to the admission of Mourinho's influence, Pardew again threw a nod toward former Sir Bobby Robson assistant and Geordie John Carver for his influence behind the scenes. For all the publicity missteps and aggravations that we have seen from Mike Ashley (right or wrong), it seems that Alan has managed to take effective steps to avoid the same at least on some scale.
Now, to important business: With the revealed influence of The Special One on one Alan Scott Pardew, Esq., what would be an appropriate nickname (which would reflect this influence) for our gaffer?