Alan Pardew & Brendan Rodgers: In Need of a Good Season

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Following on from last weeks ‘In Need Of a Good Season’ during which I looked at Anderson and Fernando Torres as prime examples of two players needing a good season for both different reasons, I now move my attention to managers who need a good season to help their careers move in the same direction, up.

Firstly, Alan Pardew needs a good season at Newcastle United. Without a shadow of a doubt Pardew was one of the managers of the 2011/12 season in any league. He managed to take the Magpies up to the almost dizzying heights of 5th place, a feat that in itself is so astounding that the fact they were looking good for a Champions League place for most of the season is almost completely ignored, because once again their could potentially be European football on Tyneside.

It could have been better if Chelsea weren’t victorious in the Champions League final as it means Tottenham would have gained Champions League qualification and Newcastle would gain automatic Europa League status. However after the London club’s win in Munich, Newcastle will have to play in a play-off round yet to be drawn to gain a place in this years Europa League group stages.

Pardew as a manager hasn’t had a season like that before. In his managerial career he has guided Reading to the First Division albeit as runners-up in 2002, he has guided West Ham into the promised land of the Premier League by winning the 2005 play off final having lost at the same stage the season before. He then went onto to lead West Ham to the FA Cup Final the following summer, which they lost on penalties to Liverpool. Most recently prior to Newcastle he won the Football League Trophy with Southampton, and thanks to this wonderful season at St James Park – I mean the Sports Direct Arena, he was awarded with the LMA Manager of the Year for the 2011-12 season.

His signings were instrumental in his sides finish. The partnership of Ba and Cisse, the Duo of Demba’s, saw not only Newcastle fans adoring the Newcastle front-line but it gained the admiration from fans of other clubs. With their Cole/Yorke style link up play and awareness of their surroundings they were arguably the most dangerous partnership for the second half of the 2011/12 season.

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