Pardew: Newcastle have done title race a favour

Alan Pardew claims Newcastle United have done the Premier League a favour by inflicting a first defeat of the season on Chelsea.

The Blues travelled to St James’ Park on Saturday looking to extend their lead at the top of the table to nine points, whilst also stretching their unbeaten run in all competitions to 22 matches. However, this has been a notoriously bad hunting ground for the Londoners in recent times, and so it proved again as the Magpies secured a third-successive win against the Londoners on home soil.

This was achieved courtesy of a second-half Papiss Cisse brace, although the hosts were made to sweat it out when Steven Taylor was sent off and Didier Drogba halved the deficit late on. After the match Jose Mourinho claimed to have no complaints about the result, although the Portuguese coach was clearly unhappy with what he felt were time-wasting tactics from the ball-boys.

“We wanted to play more football, but it was not possible because of a few things I thought didn’t belong any more to top-level football, but still belong here,” Mourinho, speaking to BT Sports, said. “The ball disappeared, the ball doesn’t come, another ball comes, and the ball-boys run away. These kinds of situations that are, unfortunately, still part of the game. But no complaints.”

Unsurprisingly, his opposite number didn’t quite see it like this. Pardew’s side are now just two points off fourth-placed Manchester United, albeit having played a game more, but on wider consideration, the Newcastle manager feels his team have done the Premier League a favour by beating Chelsea and thus injecting a little more excitement into what was threatening to become a one-horse race.

“Jose’s frustrated,” said Pardew, before Manchester City closed the gap on the leaders to just three points after beating Everton at the Etihad Stadium. “I understand that, but you’ve got to give the opposition credit. Jose’s moan at the ball-boys was a bit harsh. Come on, it’s unbelievable. Jose won’t agree, but we’ve done the Premier League a favour by making the title race more interesting.”

Does Mourinho have a point about the ball-boys, or is this a case a sour-grapes? Let us know what you think by joining in the discussion below.

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