Bah Humbug at St James’ Park

Alan Pardew, Newcastle managerNewcastle have cancelled their Christmas party after a terrible string of results has left them languishing in the lower reaches of the Premier League table.

The Magpies’ 3-1 home defeat by reigning champions Manchester City at the weekend was their sixth in seven league outings, leaving them in 15th place, just two points above the relegation zone.

The Toon have travelled to Dublin and Glasgow in recent years to enjoy the festive season, but their recent form has left the club undeserving of celebrations this year, according to manager Alan Pardew, who now needs to steer them away from their perilous league position.

“It’s out of respect to our fans and what we have served them this year,” Pardew told the Evening Chronicle.

“There’s no party for us, and the same for the staff. That’s how it should be.

“Trust me, there have been horrible things said about our group and our staff, but we are together, and we are fighting and trying to put it right.

“The fans have to realise this isn’t just a game to us, it’s our livelihoods and our profession. It pays our bills.

“Not only that, we have to have a certain pressure of entertaining our fans, who pay good money to come and watch.

“Looking at all those factors, we have not done enough this year. That’s why I think it’s right we called it off.”

Newcastle face Queens Park Rangers at St James’ Park on Saturday, knowing they will need a victory to help restore some confidence in a stuttering season.