Eight more, er, years (Video)

Alan Pardew must’ve bitten Mike Ashley’s hand off when he saw that his next contract would last for eight years. When the news broke that Newcastle United had agreed to extend the Englishman’s current deal until 2020, in the midst of the verdict of John Terry’s punishment for the racial abuse of Anton Ferdinand being announced, Twitter went into meltdown.

Many jokingly questioning whether the FA and Newcastle had got their wires crossed, with Terry handed a four game ban on top of a £220,000 fine. But no, this was no joke for the Magpies. They were keen to tie down their manager onto a long-term deal and following the similar deal signed by head scout Graham Carr earlier year, Pardew’s backroom staff also received similar deals.

It is a massive sign of intent by Newcastle, with Ashley previously criticised for being too trigger happy with managers in the past. Nevertheless, eight years is surely considered an excessively long contract to be handed to any manager, regardless of stature.

However, if they feel it is best for the club, then so be it. Pardew has performed admirably since taking charge following Chris Hughton’s shocking dismissal almost back in December 2010. A fifth place finish in his first full season in charge endeared himself to the Newcastle faithful and despite a less than stellar start to the season; Magpie fans remain confident that he is the right man to take the club forward.