It was hugely surprising to learn of the recent Premier League news last week that Alan Pardew had been handed an eight year deal to stay on as Newcastle manager until 2020.
Now in this day and age, we all know just how volatile a managerial hot-seat is – Opta index and their latest football magazine say that since the start of the Premier League in 1992 the average tenure of a Premier League manager is 701 days. That amounts to just under two years. If you take the likes of Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and even David Moyes out of that equation that figure would be even less.
It wouldn’t be fair to say that Alan Pardew doesn’t deserve such a contract. He has done very well since he was appointed in 2010 and exceeded expectations last season, but while Newcastle directors have said that they want stability at the club in order to emulate the continuity and success at Arsenal and Manchester United, I’m not sure if handing our such a lengthy contract is the answer.
It is refreshing to see a club have such a trust in a manager in this day and age. Far too many good managers have been sacked without having the time and resources to make an impact that they would be capable of. But is this a realistic contract?
If Newcastle begin to lose their next 15 games in a row, will the board and the fans still have the same level of commitment and backing towards Pardew? Or will they look to terminate that contract like so many other clubs do? I’m not so sure.
It makes you question the make up of the contract. We don’t know the details but I am sure there will be points which will allow Newcastle to release Pardew if performances aren’t being produced, or equally I’m sure Pardew will be allowed to leave should England come calling.
It is because of points like these that you can’t help but think what difference an eight-year contract makes to a 4 or 5 year contract, because at the end of the day, if he is not performing he will be treated the same way as any other manager in the business.
On the positive side, it is a signal of intent from Newcastle which is good and they are looking to build on the work of Pardew and the stability he has already brought to the club. Long may it continue and it will be very interesting to see where Newcastle and Pardew will be in eight years time.
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Written by Luke Malcher
Follow him on Twitter @lukemalcher
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