Belfast Telegraph

Alan Pardew on the brink as Newcastle slump to defeat

Stoke 1-0 Newcastle

By Phil Medlicott

The pressure on Newcastle manager Alan Pardew cranked up as his side were beaten 1-0 by Stoke at a rain-drenched Britannia Stadium last night.

Ahead of this match, Magpies owner Mike Ashley — who the club insist was joking with the comment — said Pardew would be “finished” if it ended in defeat.

And, certainly, it will be interesting to see what the future now holds for Pardew after a performance from the Tyneside outfit that hardly supported the case for him to keep his job, and was watched by Ashley from the stands.

Newcastle — several of whose fans held up ‘Sack Pardew' signs — were slow to react at the back as Peter Crouch headed in from the lively Victor Moses' cross in the 15th minute.

Jack Colback came close to levelling late on, but struck the bar from close range.

Stoke might have had a penalty in the first half when Yoan Gouffran bundled over Moses, and substitute Marko Arnautovic then hit the post early in the second half.

Overall, Mark Hughes' team were value for what were their first points at home in the Premier League this season and takes them from 17th up to 11th.

Newcastle, meanwhile, stay second-bottom and without a league victory this term.

They have won only once in 14 top-flight games stretching back to 2013/14, with 10 of those being losses, and Pardew must be wondering if his time is up.

The goal came when Moses got the better of Daryl Janmaat and sent in a delivery that Crouch crashed into the net.

Cries of “you're getting sacked in the morning” rang out around the stadium seemingly from both sets of fans and Pardew looked very worried on the sidelines indeed.

Newcastle were in desperate need of of a saviour, and it looked like Colback might be the man in the 84th minute — but he could only fire it against the frame.

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