Pardew prepared for tough calls

Alan Pardew will do whatever it takes to give Charlton the edge in their battle for Barclays Premiership survival.

Alan Pardew will do whatever it takes to give Charlton the edge in their battle for Barclays Premiership survival.

The Addicks host his old club Reading tonight looking to keep themselves out of the bottom three.

A five-game unbeaten run has yielded 11 points and moved them above Sheffield United on goals scored.

With the Blades not in action on Easter Monday, there is a chance to move even further away from the relegation zone with another strong showing at The Valley.

In their last home game, Pardew made the unusual decision to replace substitute Darren Ambrose just moments after his side had taken an 86th-minute lead against Wigan.

For the Charlton boss, it was a tactic he would employ again should he feel it necessary.

Pardew said: “My philosophy for winning is that the team comes first. The individual, I am afraid, comes second.

“That is how it is going to be.”

Pardew revealed: “I subbed Darren to win the game. I apologised to him afterwards. I put him on as an offensive change and it was time after 85 minutes to make a defensive change.

“I had to do what was best for the team, but I do not think he had any problem with it.

“Darren had only been on about 15 minutes.

“The obvious sub would have probably been for ZZ (Zheng Zhi) to have come off, and left Darren on the right.

“I just felt that it would be stronger for us. I have got to do what is right for the club, and I know Darren did not have any problem with that.

“I guess it was unusual – even (assistant manager) Phil Parkinson said to me, ’Gaffer are you sure?’

“I have just got to do what is right – and if I had to drag myself away from the bench because I had lost my head, then I would do that as well.”

Pardew revealed Ambrose, who was on the bench again for Good Friday’s goalless draw at Manchester City, had fully accepted the decision – all part of everyone pulling in the same direction.

“From the moment Darren’s number went up, he understood why I was doing it,” said the Charlton boss.

“That was important as well, that he did not react.

“Darren was one of the characters which I could do that with. He is a flair player and has scored crucial goals for us.”

Charlton have now given themselves a real fighting chance to beat the drop - with a crunch game against Sheffield United coming up on April 21, destiny would appear to be in their own hands.

Pardew said: “When you get results, everyone is going to work harder.

“I had asked for 10 cup final performances from the players, and I am getting that at the moment.

“That is why we are doing so well.”

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