Newcastle manager Alan Pardew admits 'big job' awaits this summer in bid to rebuild squad through the transfer market
Magpies fans can expect a busy summer when the transfer window opens
Friday 04 April 2014
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has admitted he always envisaged having to rebuild his team this summer.
Preparations are already underway for a major overhaul of a squad which has slipped off the Barclays Premier League pace since the January departure of star man Yohan Cabaye to Paris St Germain as injuries and suspensions have hit hard.
The loss of France international Cabaye and the club's subsequent failure to replace him proved a pivotal point in the campaign, but as he prepared for Saturday's visit of Manchester United to St James' Park, Pardew revealed he knew he would have major work to do this summer in any case.
He said: "I thought this summer would be a summer of that because the age of our players, the quality we have got, you were guessing that one or two might go.
"And with the players that we have with a year left [on their existing contracts] and those who are up, it was always a big job this summer."
Pardew's squad has a look of transition about it with strikers Loic Remy and Luuk de Jong only on loan to the club, and while the former is likely to have other suitors, the latter is yet to show he could be worth a long-term investment.
In addition, skipper Fabricio Coloccini's future remains uncertain after he expressed a wish to return to Argentina last year, while there was speculation this week that full-back Mathieu Debuchy could follow Cabaye to PSG.
There are question marks too over the futures of Hatem Ben Arfa, Sylvain Marveaux, Papiss Cisse and Sammy Ameobi, while Dan Gosling and Shola Ameobi are out of contract at the end of the season and Ryan Taylor and Jonas Gutierrez are among those who will have only 12 months remaining on their deals.
Asked if the summer represented something of a watershed, Pardew said with a smile: "Well, most summers are at Newcastle, but this one is perhaps more important than most.
"But we have got a transfer kitty that should work for us if we get the right players."
Pardew, of course, has seen Andy Carroll, Demba Ba and Cabaye leave Tyneside during his tenure, all against his wishes and for differing reasons.
However, having seen the Frenchman introduced only as a late substitute in PSG's Champions League victory over Chelsea on Wednesday evening, he warned anyone looking to follow them through the exit door that the grass is not necessarily greener elsewhere.
Pardew said: "Yohan has gone there to win trophies - you could argue that they could be in the semi-finals next week, so I am not going to argue with his decision.
"It is his decision and players have to live and die by those.
"But most of the players who have left this club in the time I have been here haven't gone on to better themselves, really, and that's an indication of the job we do here, in my opinion, on the coaching pitch and the platform they have at this great club."
It was Cabaye, of course, who fired Newcastle to their first victory at Old Trafford since 1972 on December 7 last year, and a home win at St James' Park this weekend would complete a first league double since 1931.
That would represent a major achievement with midfielder Moussa Sissoko having joined Tim Krul, Debuchy and Remy on the injured list.
A Magpies win would do little to ease United boss David Moyes' woes, and Pardew admits the pressure on managers has grown substantially during his time in the game.
He said: "There's a lot more of a lack of respect for the manager and his abilities, because it's a very, very difficult job.
"The nature of it is one week, we are geniuses, the next week, we haven't got a clue.
"Of course, it's more than that. There is a competence about what we do and the pressure on that result makes it very difficult."
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