Palace turn to rugby boss ‘for lift’

29 Apr

Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew

Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew invited Eddie Jones to watch training

Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew has enlisted the help of England rugby union coach Eddie Jones to give his side a “little bit of a lift”.

The Eagles have booked a first FA Cup final appearance for 26 years and face Manchester United at Wembley on 21 May.

Yet they have won one of the last 18 Premier League games and are not mathematically safe, prompting Pardew to invite Jones to training.

“A lot of the views he has run parallel with my own,” said Pardew.

Earlier this year, Australian Jones, 56, coached England to a first Six Nations Grand Slam since 2003.

Although Palace have a Wembley date to look forward to, they have taken just 10 points from a possible 54 since beating Stoke City away 2-1 on 19 December.

Former Australia and Japan coach Jones was present at Palace training on Thursday.

“We share a couple of professional friends,” added Pardew, who takes his side to former club Newcastle in the league on Saturday.

“One of the reasons I invited him was to give us a little bit of a lift. We had a few words with the team about complacency and what good teams do.

“He is the coach of England rugby and has been involved in World Cups with other nations. He’s has a multicultural personality and he is someone who is engaging.

“If the players can’t take on board his comments then we are in trouble.”

Palace are 16th in the table, eight points above the relegation zone with three games remaining. Sunderland and Norwich City, 17th and 18th respectively, both have one game in hand on Palace.

“We’re still not mathematically safe and that’s the task at hand,” said Pardew.

‘I’m desperate for Newcastle to stay up’

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Pardew ‘desperate’ for Newcastle to stay up

Pardew, 54, spent four years in charge of Newcastle before leaving to take over Palace in January 2015.

Despite a turbulent reign, he left the Magpies sitting 10th in the Premier League.

Newcastle are now 19th, one point from safety with three games remaining, and locked in a scramble with Sunderland and Norwich to avoid joining relegated Aston Villa in the Championship next season.

“I’m desperate they stay up,” added Pardew, even though Newcastle can still mathematically catch Palace and finish on 39 points. “Having said that, my job is to get the three points for Crystal Palace.

“That’s a big bear we’ve got to fight in that pit.”

Alan Pardew, during his time as Newcastle United manager<!–

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Alan Pardew’s turbulent Newcastle United reign


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