Pardew puts Newcastle resurgence down to lack of Europa League fixtures

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew believes the club’s improved Premier League form is down to not having to contend with the added strain of the Europa League this season, the Daily Telegraph has reported.

The Magpies’ 2-1 win over West Bromwich Albion on Saturday evening was their fourth straight victory, taking the club into sixth place, a point behind fourth-place Liverpool. It’s a stark contrast to last season when Newcastle were dragged into a relegation battle, and Pardew believes the absence of midweek European games is helping.

Swansea City and Tottenham Hotspur, the two Premier League clubs in this year’s Europa League, have endured some patchy form this season, and Pardew feels the schedule needs to be changed to help clubs cope with the demands of the competition. “It needs to go to Monday night,” Pardew said.

If they are going to insist we play on a Thursday then we have to play our subsequent league game on a Monday. I think that would be fair,” the former Southampton boss added.

If teams play in the Champions League on a Wednesday, they often play on a Sunday. That’s fair and gives you just enough time. But Thursday to Sunday is not fair.

Newcastle ended last season in 16th place, five points clear of the bottom three. A year earlier, in the season they qualified for the Europa League, Newcastle had been fifth. The 2012-13 Europa League campaign saw Pardew’s team reach the competition’s quarter-finals, where they lost to eventual runners-up Benfica, who were beaten in the final by Chelsea.

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