Pardew: Right time to leave

Pardew was confirmed as the Palace boss on January 3 after signing a three-and-a-half year contract, replacing Neil Warnock who was dismissed just after Christmas.

The appointment suprised some with Pardew leaving a side in 10th place in the Premier League for a team struggling in the relegation zone.

However, the former Palace player, who endured heavy criticism from some Magpies fans at the start of the season, insisted the move was right for all parties and said:??”For me personally and professionally it was the right time, and the right time for Newcastle. It was my decision.

“(Palace chairman) Steve Parish met the (buy-out) clause in my contract and I had a decision to make and for me it was the right decision. Four years under that type of monetary situation and the fact (Newcastle) are trying to push (on), and the history, it was difficult for a manager.

“But I left a good club with fantastic professionals and staff and players, who were phenomenal ??? also the fans. There has been a lot of talk ??? a lot of it completely off the mark ??? yes, you get criticism from the stands but never once did I sense the criticism outside the ground.

“I had tremendous support during my time there and I want to thank all the fans. My resilience and character as a manager has grown as a nature of the club.”

Asked if his departure was linked with stories of Newcastle owner Mike Ashley looking to sell up at St James’ Park, Pardew added: “I’ve not heard that and Mike never suggested that. Palace wanted me to be their manger, Newcastle told me the clause had been met and I simply had a choice. I’m a good fit for Palace.”

The Eagles are third from bottom and face a fight to remain in the top-flight but Pardew remains optimistic having experienced the mood of his squad in his first few days in charge.

He added: “The players need a lift. Hopefully my arrival and a couple of players will do that. Hopefully we can go on a run that gets us at least to safety. Realistically, this year, one place above relegation would be enough for us to build this club again.”

With three weeks left in the January transfer window, Pardew is hopeful new players can be acquired.

He said: “The chairman and board are keen to bring in a player or two and I know they’re working hard to do that. We have to wait and see. It’s very complicated to secure a player, particularly a striker. I spoke to Steve and said we’re going to need some funding because we need new players, and he agreed.”

After overcoming Dover in the FA Cup in his first game in charge, Pardew’s first reponsibilities in the Premier league sees his team??hosting Tottenham at Selhurst Park on Saturday Night Football.

“When you are fighting relegation you don???t want to play teams in red-hot form but Tottenham are,” Pardew said.

“This is a great period for them so we will have to knock them off their stride. I’m hoping to put real belief in my team. I know the welcome I’ve had from the club, ex-players and fans and I hope the place will be jumping and I need to exploit that.”

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