Kinnear's hire takes some pressure off Pardew

Posted by Lee Ryder

Ian Horrocks/Newcastle United via Getty ImagesHe's not the ballboy, but Newcastle manager Alan Pardew does not have as much influence in the transfer market as supporters would like.

You could probably have a pint in every watering hole in Newcastle and still struggle to meet a single Geordie fan who agreed with the appointment of director of football Joe Kinnear in June.

Even by Newcastle United's crazy standards through the years, the former Wimbledon manager’s arrival is one of the most-talked about developments yet on Tyneside. Kinnear has talked the talk since being appointed as transfer chief at St James’ Park, but he’s certainly struggling to walk the walk.

Even if deals for Darren Bent, Loic Remy or Bafetimbi Gomis are pulled off by Kinnear, their arrivals haven't come in time for them to get their feet under the table at Newcastle. And you can't says there are a queue of other clubs who want to sign them, which should make this a simpler task for the Toon DOF.

-Newcastle agree to fee for Gomis

Kinnear said himself that he would have "final say" on transfers on the day he decided let the world know he was back at United, three days before an official statement.

Manager Alan Pardew kept a dignified silence during the time of Kinnear’s return to Newcastle but he has since made it clear that there is clear blue water between his own role and the ex-Republic of Ireland’s recruitment position.

Pardew emerged after weeks of silence to give a detailed interview to the Chronicle in which he revealed his view of Kinnear's position. Pardew said Kinnear’s main task would be to persuade owner Mike Ashley to part with transfer funds and bring in much-needed firepower to a squad that struggled to make its mark in the Premier League last season.

The Chronicle reflected public opinion in June with a front-page headline that read: "What a Joke!"

However, even with a political storm going on in the background and Kinnear making some flabbergasting remarks -- such as taking the club back to the Champions League -- Pardew has still had to prepare his team the best he can.

It is a situation in which Pardew, whose hands appear to be completely tied when it comes to transfers, is emerging with credit from at the moment. Last season, Pardew -- by his own admission -- overcomplicated things when it came to tactics and preparation before and after games.

In his first season at Newcastle, Pardew’s task in the first six months after being appointed after Chris Hughton’s sacking was to simply steady the ship. Let’s not forget Pardew was hardly Mr. Popular when he was first handed the job.

Although he has won fans over gradually despite some ups and downs -- you just don’t lose up here against Sunderland, with the 3-0 defeat in April one of the worst derby defeats in living memory.

The reason that Pardew is getting the benefit of the doubt by Newcastle fans is mainly due to his exploits during the 2011-12 campaign, when he guided the club back to Europe for the first time in six years and became the first man since Sir Bobby Robson to serve up a top-five finish.

Now he faces his biggest test yet, in my opinion.

If anything, he has been helped a little bit by Kinnear's arrival when it comes to supporters being on his back.

Remember the likely alternative if he was to be shown the door would be Kinnear. There is no way that Kinnear would turn his nose up at the possibility of front-line management and the chance to have everybody’s attention at the centre of the media limelight.

Nobody can deny that Kinnear achieved incredible things at Wimbledon during their Premier League years and he deserved the accolades that came his way.

But football has changed considerably since the 1990s, and most up-and-coming talented players won’t have heard of Kinnear, not least the majority of the French legion who are currently at Newcastle.

Somehow though, Pardew must make it work at Newcastle and try his best to focus on training and winning the games that take him away from the football management’s insecure zone.

At the moment, with his side producing some good slick attacking displays in preseason, he seems to be keeping morale at a reasonably high level in the United camp.

He appears to have the backing of the Newcastle faithful too -- they chanted Pardew's name in preseason before following up with a round of anti-Kinnear chants.

The odds are already stacked against him to lead Newcastle to a result at Manchester City in the Premier League opener Aug. 19.

But if he can pick up six points from home games against West Ham and Fulham before the first international break, there will be plenty fans raising a glass to one man and one man only –- and it won’t be Kinnear.

Follow Lee on Twitter @lee_ryder


Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.