Thursday 17 January 2019

Pardew fighting on after talks with Baggies bosses

Albion manager’s position has been under extreme scrutiny.

West Brom boss Alan Pardew is fighting for survival
West Brom boss Alan Pardew is fighting for survival

By Andy Hampson, Press Association Sport

West Brom boss Alan Pardew is determined to fight on after holding “clear-the-air” talks with the club to address recurring speculation over his future.

Pardew is under heavy pressure with his side seven points adrift at the bottom of the Premier League after winning just one of his 16 games in charge.

Last week’s dismal 4-1 loss to Leicester, a sixth successive league defeat, sparked a wave of fresh reports that Pardew’s position was under threat.

Pardew responded by arranging a meeting with chief executive Mark Jenkins and director of football administration Richard Garlick and he feels he was given a fair hearing.

The former Newcastle and Crystal Palace boss said: “I said it was probably time I spoke to upstairs and said, ‘I don’t know where all this speculation is coming from, every week I’m on my last game etc. Let’s clear the air’.

“I told them what I think of what perhaps needs to happen at this club going forward. They listened to that and I’m still in a job.”

Boosted by that, Pardew insists he has not given up hope of survival and will fight to the end.

He said: “Where there is hope, I’ve got to believe. If I don’t, no one else will. Certainly the media doesn’t. Our win percentage shows it is probably unlikely but a win in this league can change things dramatically.

“I didn’t imagine I’d be in this scenario but I am. I need to keep showing the fight I have in me.

“Trust me, I care. I want this team to win. We have got to show the fight, even if we are not the greatest team. We have got to fight to the last moment.”

Pardew also called on his senior players to stand up and be counted.

“It is about players performing,” he said. “We are getting into a period now where the senior players need to deliver, otherwise we are not going to be in with a shout of staying up.

“This weekend and the next couple of weekends, senior players need to deliver and we need to get a win, whichever way it comes.

“I was critical of them last week because the last 20 minutes were very uncomfortable to watch. I would like to think there is going to be a response.”

Pardew feels his team will need to show significant improvement against Bournemouth.

He said: “We are going to have to run further than we have run all season. This team (Bournemouth) can cover some ground. They are an athletic team and we need to respond to that.”

Despite his strong talk, Pardew did confirm that his contract covers relegation should that fate befall his side.

He said: “When I signed up I genuinely believed we would stay in the Premier League, but I also had a clause in my contract that if it didn’t work out and we went into the Championship my contract would cover that.”

Press Association

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