It is almost like a running joke, but much like the Terminator Alan Pardew is back once again in the Premier League this time with West Bromich Albion after the club confirmed parting ways with Premier League main staple Tony Pulis. The 59 year-old parted ways with “the Baggies” following their lowly 16th placed position currently in the Premier League, a far cry from finishing 10th in the season previous.
(Pardew and Pulis have a good working relationships, hopefully Pulis isn’t one to hold a grudge against Pardew)
As Pulis hangs up his cap after three years at West Brom his replacement Alan Pardew steps into the limelight once again, the 56 year-old has like Pulis seemed to be around forever with stints in charge of West Ham, Southampton, Newcastle and most recently Crystal Palace in 2015-16 the most notable. Pardew really has become a journeyman of top flight management without really cementing himself at one club with a average stint at each club of 2 years and 2 months (transfermarkt), and he is a colourful character equally well known for his management style as he is for his dancing after Crystal Palace went ahead against eventual winners Manchester United in the FA Cup Final.
What does Pardew offer West Brom? Alan Pardew offers a different style of management to Pulis with more emphasis on a mixture of dogged defending and exciting attacking play, Zaha and Puncheon especially lit up the Palace attack under Pardew in his last managerial stint. In terms of tactics the Englishman is very at odds with the pragmatic style of play that Pulis offered, while Pulis preferred a 4-1-4-1 with a counter attack style of play adopted here Pardew generally utilise a 4-2-3-1 with two pacey wingers and a big centre-forward up front which West Bromich Albion have in 6ft 1 Venezuelan Saloman Rondon.
(Pardew’s dancing skills are almost as good as his man management, but this highlights the fact that he is a player at heart allowing him to get the best out of his players)
But maybe one of Pardew’s best qualities is his ability to get the best out of his players and is away from the pitch a likeable guy, and in terms of his relationship with the players he is more friendly with his players than Pulis was. This makes players want to fight for him and give the now Silver haired Englishman a edge over his rivals, arguably a pivotal quality allowing him to get the best out of his players; a quality that may be pivotal if West Brom want to break away from the growing number of teams in the relegation scrap.
Say what you like about Alan Pardew but he knows talent when he sees it, and maybe the two players that will prosper the most out of Pardew’s appointment is wide pair Jay Rodriguez (formally of Southampton) and Oliver Burke (formally of Rasenball Leipzig). The two speed machines will have so much joy bombing up and down the wing with less defensive work then under Pulis, the two however need to prove that they can work hard in defence when called upon and whip balls in to the big centre-forward that Pardew prefers.
(£15 million signing Oliver Burke will be itching to get life under Pardew underway and may become one of West Brom’s best players)
With fixtures coming firm and fast in the Christmas period West Brom fans and players alike will be hoping that Pardew will give them a early Christmas present, is the midlands based side’s Christmas stocking full of points or more disappointment? Meanwhile Alan Pardew will want to cement his place at a club, Pardew has all the qualities to be a great manager but somewhere in that second season it all goes wrong! Will West Brom be that destination he can build upon or will fall short like he has at numerous other clubs?