Friday, 23 December 2016

Dead Man Dancing

It's not sudden death Alan, game's still going on...
I drily observed back in August that:
This all but guarantees that by November, Leicester City will be a top three team, Crystal Palace will be relegated, Alan Pardew will be the first managerial casualty of the EPL season, Donald Trump will win the Presidential Election by a landslide and Article 50 will have been triggered.
With yesterday's announcement that Alan Pardew had been asked to stand down, my 'success rate' on the above predictions became much higher than the zero I'd expected. 

My lays of Leicester City are looking good, and Article 50 won't be triggered in 2016, but the others were scarily prescient, or at least too close fr comfort. Crystal Palace are far too good to go down of course, but as Palace's terrible 2016 form continued into the new season, it was hardly a surprise that Alan Pardew has 'stepped down'. 

In my opinion, a year is long enough and while Steve Parish might have given him more time, the US owners were less patient, and Pardew did himself no favours in suggesting they didn't understand football or in almost completely ignoring their interest in analytics
They put one of their key American sports analytics specialists at his disposal but that individual found Pardew actively responded to his work once every six weeks.
It is one of the unspoken rules of working for new owners that you at least pay lip service to their ideas and some rudimentary homework would have told Pardew that analytics was fundamental to Harris, in particular.
As some readers will know, I was in Philadelphia last month when Crystal Palace let a 4:3 lead became a 5:4 defeat (at Swansea City) in stoppage time, and shortly after the game, a Philadelphia based (American) supporter in the pub took a call from none other than Josh Harris who, from what I could tell, was not a happy man.

Less consequentially I admit, but Pardew lost my support in May, and looking back to that month I wrote:
Taking the lead with 12 minutes to go was incredible, but when the big screen showed Pardew - "He's Alan Pardew, he shags who he wants" - gyrating on the touchline, I had a bad feeling. Seriously, your team has just taken the lead in a Cup Final, and rather than calm the players down, warn them of the pressure that now must come, make some adjustments etc., he's out there dancing "hey world, look at me". I thought he didn't want attention these days. Less than three minutes later, and the lead was gone.
And seven months later Pardew is gone, with a tidy sum in compensation it must be said, so don't feel too sorry for him losing his job shortly before Xmas. 

I'm sorry it didn't work out for him - a former player and club hero is always a bonus as a manager - but it didn't work out, and a change was needed. I thought it might come after the Swansea City game next month, but now is fine with me. 

Time to move on. Looking back even further in the archives, I found this post on his unsuitability for the Newcastle United job back in 2010 which some of you may find interesting.

On the topic of Premium Charges, a very seasonal and optimistic Baz commented:
I just wish I was smart enough to pay PC, maybe next year. Best wishes for Christmas and New Year, hopefully you will be around to amuse and educate us for another year and annoy those who deserve to be annoyed, Barrie.
Barrie must be a new reader if he's not yet paying Premium Charges! Hopefully that will change for him by the end of next year. 

I have no plans to go anywhere, so prepare to be amused and educated for a little longer, and if you're out there telling porkies about how it is all but impossible to lose, expect to be called out. 

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