ALAN Pardew is adament he is ready for the challenges ahead at Newcastle United.
The Toon boss has broken his silence on an eventful few weeks at St James’s Park.
The only significant arrival has been that of Joe Kinnear, the club’s new director of football. Managing director Derek Llambias, meanwhile, has left.
Kinnear’s had his say. Now Pardew’s had his.
Sat in his office at United’s Benton training ground yesterday, a tanned Pardew was keen to answer the questions supporters have been asked since owner Mike Ashley’s controversial appointment of Kinnear, understood to be holidaying in Sardinia.
Whatever the misgivings among fans about Kinnear – and there are many – Pardew is hopeful the new set-up can work.
He remains the manager. What happens on the pitch remains his domain.
And Pardew’s acutely aware what his team served up on the field last season wasn’t good enough.
But first, the Kinnear question.
“I can’t talk for Joe, and I can’t talk in terms of the decision,” Pardew said.
“Mike has made the decision. Derek has gone.
“People assumed that Joe was doing my role, but obviously I have a seven-year contract to manage this football club, and until I’m told differently, then that’s what I’m going to do.
“Joe comes in to do Derek’s job.
“The positive thing that comes out of that is that there is a relationship that might work better for me.
“When the owner of the club brings in a football person as a director, then I have to pay respect.
“I have to listen, but ultimately, it’s my decision because I’m signed on for seven years to manage this football club.
“Trust me, anybody who knows me knows that I won’t be swayed in any way when it comes to what I think is right, unless I think there is clarity to it.
“So I’m somebody who works very much on the facts - and not the myth.”