'The fans were not accepting me': Alan Pardew on Mike Ashley rumours and Newcastle exit
Alan Pardew has opened up on his Newcastle United departure and the rumours surrounding his relationship with Mike Ashley.
It's been five years since the 57-year-old left the Magpies for Crystal Palace after his relationship with the fans deteriorated.
He led United to their highest Premier League finish in the last 15-year, though Pardew believes it was his 'links' with owner Ashley caused the fans to turn on him.
“I wasn’t forced out but the fans linked me 100 per cent with (owner) Mike Ashley,” he said.
“I left to go to Palace and people say to me ‘oh, you were great at Newcastle but I am sorry how it ended’.
"It didn’t matter whether I finished sixth that year, the fans were not accepting me."
When Pardew replaced Chris Hughton in December 2010, questions were raised surrounding Pardew's prior dealings with Ashley.
“There were rumours that I went to casinos and that’s how I knew Mike. But I never go to casinos.
"I didn’t know him before I got the Newcastle job but that rumour never left me. I am not bitter about it. It is what it is.”
Pardew was speaking to the Daily Telegraph, where he hopes of getting back into management after his disastrous spell at West Bromwich Albion.