Alan Pardew settled into his seat at the Beckenham Training Ground for his first interview since becoming boss of the club feeling right at home being back at Crystal Palace.
"Every time I came back here it was always a lovely welcome and a nice feeling, and I knew that, at some point, I'm sure I would have worked for this club because really and truly my home is in this area. For me, it's what you would class, as about as close as you can as a manager, to your own club.
“It was a difficult decision because I'm leaving a big club in Newcastle, but it was choice I decided to make, I felt it was right for myself and for my family and my career”.
Memories of wearing the red and blue for the club’s former midfielder always come back to him when he has visited Selhurst Park as an opposing manager and the welcome he has always received gives him a special feeling.
"Fans love you when you've done something good at a football club. They remember that era I was in and they admired the spirit and the way we approached games and they would probably like to see a bit more of that, and hopefully I can bring that back.”
Alan watched the match at Aston Villa from the stands and has seen the lads in a couple of training sessions and has been impressed with what he has seen from a group who are determined to repeat last season’s achievements.
"The players have got great attitudes here, they have been first-class and I've been very impressed. So can I help change that energy into more tangible results, well that might take a transfer, a change of style a little bit, and that's hopefully what a manager of my experience can manage to do.”
Now into January the new manager has an immediate opportunity to add to the squad and discussions have already taken place about movements into the transfer market.
“We've had discussions and without putting pressure on the chairman we'll need a player or two at least. To suddenly change to expansive football is not going to suit us and we'll find teams will be more technically dominant than us in the Premier League, so we have to find a different way. A few tweaks here and there, a general evolution of our system and that's really as much as I would put on it.”
The excellent support from the stands was something that the Palace fans became renowned for last season and Alan believes that must remain as this campaign continues.
"A real big bonus for this football club is the fans and we can't lose that, otherwise we'll take away a big power source we have at home. This football club has done incredibly well over the last couple of years. It is a little bit sticky at the moment, but we need to find a route out of that.
to watch the full interview given by Alan to Palace TV.