Pardew hails Magpies spirit
Newcastle manager looking forward to facing Barton at QPR
Last Updated: September 8, 2011 1:54pm
Alan Pardew has insisted that nobody can disrupt the unity that exits within the Newcastle squad as he prepares his side for a reunion with Joey Barton at Queens Park Rangers.
The Magpies have made an impressive start to the Premier League season, following up a goalless draw against Arsenal with victories over Sunderland and Fulham.
Reports nevertheless started to circulate this week suggesting Pardew could be set to quit his role in frustration at a lack of backing from the club's board.
Those stories have already been firmly dismissed, and the manager has now stressed that 'everybody is pulling in the right direction'.
Pardew, who is understood to have travelled to watch Switzerland's Euro 2012 qualifier against Bulgaria on Tuesday, is looking ahead to the rest of the campaign with optimism.
"We have everybody pulling in the same direction and it's something they can't take away from us," he told the Evening Chronicle.
"No matter how much bad publicity we have or negativity there is around the place, we still have great team spirit.
"That is what we will take to QPR."
Monday's clash at Loftus Road will see Pardew's men come up against Barton, who is likely to make his QPR debut after leaving Newcastle before the transfer deadline.
Pardew is confident that Newcastle can maintain their fine form but accepts that Barton's presence in the opposing side will provide an added interest.
"Joey will add some spice to the occasion, there's no doubt about it. But nobody knows Joey's strengths better than us," said Pardew.
"We will make sure we try to look after him the best we can.
"We have been smart for three games. We need to take that smartness to QPR.
"We have played each game in a different manner and we have come away with three great results. That is always important.
"It's important that we have a good game plan and that everybody is focused on it."