independent

Friday 18 April 2014

Pardew defiant as fans vent fury

NEWCASTLE UTD 1

READING 2

Under-fire Newcastle boss Alan Pardew insisted he is strong enough to take the tide of criticism that came his way after a demoralising home defeat by Reading.

The 51-year-old saw his relegation-threatened side squander a 1-0 lead against one of only four sides worse off than them to lose 2-1 after Adam Le Fondre came off the bench to pile on the agony with a second-half double.

Pardew's three second-half substitutions were all booed by the home fans, and there were further jeers on the final whistle as they slipped to a 10th league defeat in 13 outings.

Newcastle have won just three of the 18 league games they have played since the manager signed his eight-year contract last September, and his stock has slipped alarmingly as a result, but he remained defiant.

"I am strong enough and have been in situations before where I can deal with where we are at,'' said Pardew.

"But I think it's obvious that the team wants a result. That would help every situation."

Newcastle had only Yohan Cabaye's superb 35th-minute free-kick to show for their efforts, and that was to prove costly.

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