ALAN Pardew says he can take the flak from supporters as Newcastle United battle relegation.
Two of Pardew’s substitutions in Saturday’s 2-1 home defeat to Reading were booed by frustrated fans.
And there were more jeers when Pardew’s beleaguered players left the field at St James’s Park.
The result left the 16th-placed club deep in trouble near the foot of the Premier League.
However, Pardew – who retains the backing of Newcastle’s hierarchy – insists he’s got broad enough shoulders to take the criticism that’s coming his way.
“I got booed when I brought on Shola (Ameobi against QPR) last time, and he got the winner,” Pardew said.
“It didn’t work out (against Reading), and I have to accept that.”
With United leading by Yohan Cabaye’s first-half free-kick, Pardew replaced Sylvain Marveaux with holding player James Perch in an attempt to shore up his team.
Cabaye, however, was soon forced off the field with a groin problem, leaving Newcastle without a creative influence in midfield.
After the game, decided by two goals from visiting substitute Adam Le Fondre, Pardew admitted he wouldn’t have substituted Marveaux had he known Cabaye wouldn’t last the game.
“It is difficult when you haven’t got a grip of a game,” he added. “I thought we were losing the battle there.
“Unfortunately, they (the fans) were disappointed with that, and I’ve got to live with that.”
With Newcastle without a game this weekend, Pardew, his players and the club’s fans must stew on the Reading result until the club’s visit to Villa Park a week today.
“It’s a difficult one,” said Pardew. “We’ve got to wear that now, and that’s never nice. You want a get a game under your belt.
“It’s a big game now, Villa.”