8. The stats
It’s hard to know where to begin with these. The current streak of five league defeats is a new record, with games against Arsenal, Cardiff and Liverpool set to extend that. Some more statistics relating to recent results will be used later on but the well hasn’t gone dry. In 133 league games, Pardew’s side have only won after going behind on five occasions – one of those happened after Stoke went down to nine men. More tellingly, none of these five had Newcastle losing at half time. So Pardew’s team talks have not once inspired a Geordie turnaround, showing an inability to respond to setbacks and a failure to motivate.
Counter-argument: Stats can prove or disprove anything.
Yes, but come on! These stats are undeniably abysmal, with each giving a worrying glimpse into Pardew’s psyche. In a radio interview at the end of the 2011-12, Pardew boasted of a “perfect” corner routing that was devised on the training ground. Newcastle then proceeded to go 18 months until scoring from another one. Think about how often teams score from corners: Newcastle went 25 months in total – over two years – without converting one until Loic Remy scored past Norwich. ‘Draw a plane’ is an anagram of Alan Pardew, yet he can’t even draw up a basic corner routine. Again, what exactly goes on at the training ground?