Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has vowed to keep on fighting after his side’s 1-0 defeat at Stoke left them second bottom in the Barclays Premier League.
The Magpies were slow to react as Peter Crouch headed in the winner from Victor Moses’ cross in the 15th minute and, once again, several Newcastle fans could be seen holding up ‘Sack Pardew’ signs throughout the contest.
While there were other moments of defensive uncertainty from the visitors, they rarely looked like finding an equaliser, with Potters goalkeeper Asmir Begovic only really being called upon to make one decent save, keeping out Daryl Janmaat.
Jack Colback came close to levelling late on, but struck the bar from close range.
The defeat leaves Newcastle in 19th place with just three points from their opening six matches of the season.
Pardew told Sky Sports 1: “It leaves us in the position where we’re in the bottom three and we have to fight. I have to fight and the team have to fight and that’s what we’ll continue to do until we can turn it around.
“I think (himself and owner Mike Ashley) we’ll have some serious conversations before Saturday because he doesn’t want to lose and nor do I.
“I think it’s important I show to the team that I’m here to lead the team.
“I’ve never really been in this situation before. It’s a bit unique, but I’m a professional football manager, that’s what I do and that’s what I’ll continue to do.”
Pardew acknowledged the Britannia Stadium is a difficult place to go home with points, adding: “It’s a tough place to come stoke on any given day, but today was tough for us.
“Slight margins in the game (were to blame) but unfortunately it was another defeat for us and we can’t keep getting beaten so we’re going to have to address that.
“That’s been our problem probably for most of the season really (the final third letting them down).
“We’ve got to find a little bit more quality there. Our delivery, our method a little bit let us down in that area. We’re going to need to make a couple of changes I think to the starting 11 to give ourselves a bit more thrust.
“We just need something in that final area, someone to create the moment. We’ve had a few chances tonight. Unfortunately tonight we weren’t able to get that.”
Pardew looked to give fresh impetus to his attack by introducing Papiss Cisse for Emmanuel Riviere at the interval and revealed the former was not used from the start as he returns to full fitness.
He said: “Cisse obviously was not quite match fit. He got the two goals for us last weekend, but it probably showed (in the) second half tonight that he’s not quite there but he’ll be a big player for us.
“Stoke defend really well, they get their midfield in tight to the back four and make it very difficult for you but we just didn’t come up with the answer tonight.”
Crouch was delighted with the win which saw them move into 11th and the man of the match said after his side’s first home league win of the season: “I think you could tell at the end, it was a little bit nervy considering we didn’t win the first two games here, so we’re back to winning ways.
“I think last year it was a bit of a fortress so hopefully we can maintain that.
Crouch praised Victor Moses for his assist in the 15th-minute goal, adding: “He’s been our main threat for the whole season really.
“I know he’s going to get balls into the box and he’s going to beat his man nine times out of 10 so it’s just the case – for me – getting into the box. So great delivery and I’m pleased with the goal.
“The quality of the balls always good, and Victor’s brought that this season. A lot more pace and a lot more direct and good quality when he gets into those areas as well.”