Monday, January 30, 2006
Pardew on right-back, strikers, and Football Genius
* Alan Pardew has conceded that he might not be able to sign the required replacement for Tomas Repka before the end of January. "Defensively things aren't too pretty," he said. "I feel we will struggle to get a new right-back before the window closes. We are not getting the right responses and the figures we are being quoted I am not going to pay. We have plenty of targets but teams are getting edgy now, they don't want to lose their best players. It is difficult because I don't want to bring in a stop-gap, I want someone who will take the club forward."
Erm - I would think at this stage a stop-gap would be good enough considering how low on cover we are there.
* But there aren't any worries up front. "We have scored more goals here than Chelsea have at Stamford Bridge - and Dean Ashton hasn't even pulled our shirt on yet," said Pardew. "He is a fantastic player and we look forward to seeing his first game - but he might have to wait for his chance. The transfer figures go out the window, I will pick my best team and he hasn't showed me anything yet because he hasn't had his chance. My teams always play in a cavalier style and always score goals. I like to give strikers licence to do their stuff and we are very fortunate that we have a rich vein of form in that area. Bobby carried it for us in that first half. He was terrific. This is what competition does, it pushes people. And what a terrific attitude Marlon showed after being left out of the team, to come on and put that effort in. Teddy is very important to us and he passes on that expertise to the others players. I am blessed with luxury up there. Ashton is definitely fit for Wednesday - so God knows what I am going to do!"
* The West Ham boss has also spoken out in defence of Christian Dailly, who has been booed by the West Ham crowd repeatedly this season. "The crowd can get a bit edgy about Christian and I don't know why because he has been terrific for the club, and terrific for me. In fact, I don't think I'd be standing here now if it wasn't for Christian because when I first came he was my biggest ally. I was coming into a massive club that had had a lot of turmoil and bad feeling and if you don't get the senior players to support you are in big trouble. At that time he was rock solid with me and I'll never be able to repay him for that. It is a horrible, horrible feeling that your own fans are not with you. You can be Scottish international, Scottish captain, Brazilian captain it still hurts and I hope our fans give him more support than they have done. Our fans are testing, they have tested me a few times, but we grow with it. Christian is Mr Resilient and he won the fans around today. He is an example to every young player that you have to be big and strong in this game."