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Six Realistic Managerial Targets for Newcastle United That Would Improve on Alan Pardew

17/09/2014 17:39 BST | Updated 17/11/2014 10:59 GMT

Unless a spectacular change in fortune is around the corner for Newcastle, it would seem than Alan Pardew's time as Magpies boss is almost up.

The 53-year-old has watched over some dire performances during his time as manager and has seen his side slip to the bottom of the Premier League table early in the season.

Many would argue that a stroke of luck in the transfer market which led to the Tyneside club signing the likes of Yohan Cabaye, Hatem Ben Arfa and Cheick Tiote on the cheap, made Pardew look better than he is and have helped in prolonging his stay.

Now that the dust has settled, his tactical and man-management deficiencies seem to be showing him up for what he really is.

There are plenty of talented managers on the market who would surely love the chance to manage a club like Newcastle - here are six of the best options available if Pardew does get the chop.

6. Roberto Di Matteo

Possibly the most successful caretaker boss in the history of the game, Roberto Di Matteo guided Chelsea to Champions League victory in the 2012 after Andre Villas-Boas was sacked.

He has recently been linked with the Leeds job, though his success at Chelsea means that he could become a potential target for clubs higher up in the league system.

With the Magpies currently floundering around at the bottom of the league, there are not many Newcastle fans that would pass up the opportunity to sign up a Champions League winner as a replacement for the beleaguered Pardew.

5. David Moyes

Despite his torrid time at Manchester United, there is little doubt that David Moyes is still a quality manager and would likely thrive at a club like Newcastle.

The Toon are in a similar financial position to Moyes' Everton and if he could replicate on Tyneside what he did on Merseyside, it would not take him long to become a Geordie Hero.

The only thing stopping Moyes and Newcastle teaming up could be the Scot's' reluctance to take a new role so soon after Manchester United.

4. Tony Pulis

Although the style of football that his teams play is often criticised, it is almost incomprehensible that Newcastle would get relegated if Pulis took charge of the side. If he managed to get Palace out of trouble last season, then it should be a walk in the park to save this Newcastle team.

Newcastle's form under Pardew since the start of the year has been dreadful and if they keep it up they could find themselves in the second-tier next campaign.

Pulis may not be the most popular choice on this list, but he would at least keep the side in the Premier League which is something that Pardew looks to be struggling to do.

3. Michael Laudrup

Laurdrup was somewhat harshly sacked earlier in the year by Swansea after a poor run of form left them struggling to stay in the top-flight.

Nonetheless, prior to this he did have the side playing some beautiful football.

He is currently the manager of Qatar Stars League club Lekhwiya, though if a Premier League side came calling then he would surely make the return to England.

Appointing Laudrup would represent more of a risk than some of the other options available, but Newcastle could reap the rewards of his footballing genius if he was allowed to embed his philosophy into the side.

2. Neil Lennon

Neil Lennon's success at Celtic was perhaps undermined by the fact that he had no real rivals in the league for the majority of time that he was boss.

Celtic's victories against Barcelona in the Champions League, however, are of course well documented and the fact that they were smashed 6-1 on aggregate by Legia Warsaw this year shows just how far they have regressed since Lennon left.

He is untested as a manager outside of Scotland, though an untested manager is better than one like Pardew who suddenly seems so out of his depth in the Premier League.

1. Gianfranco Zola

The former Chelsea striker resigned as Watford boss after a poor run of form towards the end of 2013, though he had previously led the side to the Championship play-off final which they narrowly lost to Crystal Palace.

Given enough time, Zola could potentially get Newcastle playing some beautiful football, something which would undoubtedly delight Magpies fans as Pardew's penchant for the long-ball have often received much criticism.

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