Richard Hercock: Newcastle and West Ham set example for chairmen to follow

Every week comes the headline that a high-profile manager is on the verge of losing his job.

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew.

Some gaffers do not even make it beyond the end of August before the chop comes.

In the case of Tony Pulis at Crystal Palace, he left 48 hours before a ball was kicked in anger this campaign. In Pulis’s case, however, it was more political rather than any shortcomings on the field.

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It all comes down to people panicking in the boardroom, chairman fearing doomsday scenarios of relegation in most cases.

It is very easy to be swayed by what the punters are chanting from the stands – or the keyboard warriors at home – but sometimes the chairman has to show some backbone.

So step forward and take a bow Mr Mike Ashley.

As Newcastle United stumbled from one embarrassing result to the next, Toon supporters demanded that Alan Pardew be sacked.

Some fans even set up a website, such was the campaign to get rid of the former Charlton manager.

Newcastle did not win in their opening seven Premier League games and it certainly seemed bleak for the under-fire boss.

We were all just waiting for the inevitable, when the statement would come thanking Mr Pardew for his services to the club and wish him well for the future. Then, something strange happened. Newcastle actually won a game. Then another. And another. Suddenly, it was an unbeaten run and Pardew was being hailed as the mastermind behind the recovery.

Newcastle are currently on the crest of a five-match winning wave, after league victories over Leicester City, Tottenham, Liverpool and West Brom.

They even triumphed 2-0 at league champions Manchester City in the Capital One Cup.

The Toon sit eighth in the Premier League table this morning and it must make for sweet reading over the Pardew breakfast table. Newcastle’s next three Premier League matches see QPR visit St James’ Park today, before trips to West Ham and Burnley.

Rangers and the Clarets are the bottom two sides and who would bet against Newcastle and Pardew climbing even higher in the table? Interesting to note, the Hammers’ Sam Allardyce is another manager who was wanted out of Upton Park by home fans, but has justified the faith by the club’s owners to sit fourth in the table.

Harry Redknapp (7-2) is some bookies’ favourite to be the next Premier League chief to face the axe at QPR, closely followed by Aston Villa’s Paul Lambert (4-1).

But maybe the resurrection in fortunes of Messrs Pardew and Allardyce will allow for some extra breathing space at Loftus Road and Villa Park in these dangerous weeks ahead of the January transfer market.

It is now when chairman start planning for a new manager, as Christmas looms ever closer.

I do not know Mike Ashley, but from the outside he has had plenty of flak from both Newcastle fans and the footballing public.

But he deserves a large portion of the credit, for keeping the faith with Pardew.

Chairmen everywhere, please take note.