Alan: Improvement Needed

Alan Pardew admits that he is looking for an improvement in the standard of performance from the win over Notts. County on Tuesday.

He acknowledges that it was somewhat laboured and says:

"We made six changes in the week and are the first to admit we gave a disjointed display in the first half.

"But we were much better in the second half and I thought we were deserved winners - we gifted them a couple of goals but I didn't ever feel we were going to lose the game.

"The philosophy of how we want to play doesn't change but it doesn't always pan out how you want it.

"We know that we have to do a wee bit in terms of getting that stadium super-positive and we are doing the best we can; there is pressure on us to play and get results but the bottom line is we need to win.

"The important factor for us is that we got the result and it was an added bonus that Bobby got the two goals.

"The two Carling Cup ties we have had saw the opposition really raise their game and they were really tight matches, so we had to get through the rounds, which we have done - and got a fantastic reward out of it."

That reward is the draw against Chelsea in October, and he says:

"We will be going to Stamford Bridge looking to give the sort of performance we gave when we went to White Hart Lane after I arrived - but this time get the result.

"With the playoff final defeat it is nice to have something to look forward to, and hopefully we can keep the results going until we get to Chelsea, have a good night out and get the right result.

"I would be confident to go there with the team and feel sure we could put on a display and look to win the match, which is what we will try and do.

"Chelsea have a huge pool of players so I am pretty sure we wouldn't know what their starting eleven would be - but from our point of view we will take the strongest eleven and try to win the game."

Looking at the trip to Forest, Alan says:

"The Forest tradition is to play and to attack and especially on this occasion I don't think there is any doubt that is how they will approach the game.

"I feel away from home we are even more dangerous and I think it will be a nicely poised game.

"There has not been one match that I have come away from that we have shut up shop in since I have been here - we have tried to dominate games.

"We have not always achieved that, but that is what we have attempted to do and it will be a nicely poised game.

"I think on Sunday people will see when they look at our bench just how strong or squad is - and it is that which will get us promoted.

"There are going to be some very good players that don't make it this weekend."

Steve Lomas is likely to be on the bench and Alan explains:

"Steve is not 100% yet and I'd like to think we are in a position at the club now where he has to be 100% to play."

Meanwhile, Alan has ruled out a move for Sunderland's John Oster, despite a claim from Mick McCarthy that there is interest.

"There has been no contact with Sunderland," he reveals.

"I have to say I am relatively happy with my squad but you are always looking."

As for the possibility of Chris Powell coming to the club permanantly after his one month loan is up, he says:

"Me and Curbs have come to the agreement that we would go for a month and see where that goes.