It is being widely reported that Pardew is going to be given until the Hull game. After his record breaking runs of late, what is the point?

Yes, you can be selective with statistics. Pardew’s current form as Newcastle manager shows 5 wins from 25 games. Even if he manages a win against Hull, what changes? 5 wins from 25 would turn into 6 from 26, an increase from 20% to 23%.

The home record would turn into 4 from 13 as compared with 3 from 12. Newcastle supporters can currently expect fewer than 1 win in every 3 home games. Since Stoke on Boxing Day, that is 1 in 4. Of the previous 12 at home, Pardew’s Newcastle have failed to score in 7 of them. In more than half of home games, the paying public have not seen a Newcastle goal.

It should not be forgotten that whilst punters look at Pardew’s Newcastle United, Pardew himself was appointed by Ashley, so in effect, the stodge produced on the football field is down to Ashley himself. Put another way, Ashley is a loser.

The Southampton match was full of contrasts. When Pardew left, the Saints were 14th in League 1. Adkins, Pochettini and now Koemans have taken them up two leagues, consolidated them in the top flight and notably last season they finished above Newcastle United. Different managers have masterminded 4-0 victories at St Mary’s.

One of the clubs has progressed since sacking Pardew. The other has regressed from 12th to bottom of the Premier League. Coincidentally, Pardew’s replacement at West Ham not only took them out of the relegation zone whislt his successor at reading took them to the Premier League, something which Pardew singularly failed to do.

This is not his first flirtation with relegation at Newcastle. One goal either way against Wigan could have seen him take the Geordies down.

The other comparison that seems fair is the number of new players in each of the squads on show at St Mary’s. 4 new signings started for Pardew. 5 started for Southanpton, including Shane Long who Pardew has stated was not good enough for Newcastle.

One of the managers has integrated the new signings into the team, the other has not.

Of course, Pardew has excuses, he always has. We were affected by the international break. Of course, Southampton had no players away on international duty, after all, they have sold all of their best talent. The crowd affected the players, just as they did when driving the team on against Palace. The crowd never get it right, either too negative or too positive. It’s all our fault.

He had of course also lost two big players, one a new signing, the other a player who has yet to start in the Premier League.

Pardew may be able to make a case. Ashley’s squad and spending have revealed what he meant when he referred to “no capital outlay”. His team on the pitch cost pretty much the equivalent of the profit from Carroll and Debuchy. Southampton’s transfer surplus during the summer was pretty much the same as Newcastle made from Carroll.

Is Ashley to blame? Arguably yes but in Saturday’s further humiliation, the 7th defeat by 3 or more goals this year and the 14th in the last 23 months, one club has made a significant transfer surplus whilst Newcastle broke even.

Ashley’s motives have long been questioned by fervent supporters. On this occasion, failure to spend TV money does not allow Pardew to claim that he can’t compete with spending clubs. Ashley is sitting on a gol mine, with profits from the increased TV revenue augmenting an already profitable company, as well as the Cabaye and Debuchy cash, not to mention lesser lights such as Tavernier, Amalfitano and others.

Is he trying to pay back the Geordie public for the humiliating protest, ironically against our next opponents, Hull, following the Keegan constructive dismissal? His subsequent appointment of Kinnear paved the way for the next gross insult, that of Pardew himself, not to mention the agreement with shirt sponsors who some may argue are infinitely more ethical than Ashley and Pardew.

It makes one wonder what might follow.

Perhaps, like Baldrick, Ashley has a cunning plan, to save himself more money. OK, so we do not know what the severance terms are for Pardew. What did come out in the Keegan tribunal, apart from Ashley’s regime being “misleading”, was that Keegan had a cap on his severance payment. We might expect the same for Pardew.

Again, Hull featured when Pardew was disciplined, being given a public warning as to his behaviour, apparently kicking the ball away, perhaps to waste time, then engaging in a head to head confrontation with a Hull player. Who is to say that the dismal results have not resulted in a 2nd or even final warning? It may even be that Ashley can get away without compensating Pardew at all.

Admittedly, some of this is speculation, which has resulted in the banning of eminent journalists from St James’ Park. Banning of supporters, such as I would be a blessing after the dross served up on the pitch, so we feel free to speak out.

With Pardew, as with Kinnear, Ashley has chosen to be a loser. We have probably all noted his ethical stances, as described by the Keegan tribunal. We are aware that he has made money and that Newcastle United has provided him with the write offs to give Aspers, sorry, Ashley himself, a tax free piggy bank.

Will Hull provide Ashley with the material to totally humiliate Pardew or does Ashley have a cunning plan, tinged with a sense of irony that few give him credit for?