Alan Pardew dismisses Mike Ashley rumours and defends Newcastle United fans
Alan Pardew has rubbished rumours that he was told not to focus on cup competitions during his time at Newcastle United.
During an interview with Richard Keys and Andy Gray on beIN SPORTS, Pardew was quizzed on Newcastle's lack of intent to progress in cup competitions.
And the former Crystal Palace and West Ham boss dismissed myths that he was told by the club's ownership to field weakened teams to prevent a cup run.
He did, however, admit that his squad was looking 'short' when it came to cup competitions - forcing him to focus on the league.
"When I was there it was difficult, because the budget you have there isn't really making you competitive in the Premier League," he said.
"To double up on cups, we were always looking short when it came up to the third round.
"It's a tough agenda because obviously the owner and the club are not all in tune.
"Your bread and butter is of course the league, and for the owner and the chief executive the focus is very much on the league because that keeps the revenue ticking over.
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"I have to say, I was never under any pressure to field weakened teams.
"No-one ever put the call in to leave people out. Some of those myths get put across."
And Pardew also defended the club's fans when asked if their expectations were too high - with the former Magpies' chief saying he wishes more success for the club's fanbase.
"I don't think so," he admitted.
"I think you understand it, and if you don't understand it then don't be Newcastle manager.
"It's difficult to deal with at times. The emphasis of the media up there is very, very much on Newcastle, there's no other team in the city.
"It's constant pressure, but no more so than any other big club."
"You just wish more for them [the fans]."