Alan Pardew returns to full-time football management and could immediately win a trophy

Former Newcastle United and West Ham United manager Alan Pardew is back in full-time management for the first time since leaving his post at ADO Den Haag in 2020

Pardew is back in management for the first time since 2020

Alan Pardew is back in full-time football management, having agreed a deal to take charge of CSKA Sofia until the end of next season.

The former Newcastle United, West Ham United and Crystal Palace boss, who reached the 2016 FA Cup final with the Eagles, had been in interim charge of the Bulgarian side since they parted ways with Stoycho Mladenov in mid-April.

However, the club have now announced a longer-term deal for the 60-year-old.

Pardew will have a chance to win silverware within a fortnight of taking the reins on a permanent basis. CSKA beat neighbours Slavia on penalties in the semi-finals of their domestic cup, and will take on another Sofia club – Levski – in the final on May 11.

According to a release from CSKA, Pardew’s team will include former West Ham coach Alex Dyer as well as youth coach Martin Stoyanov and analyst Hristo Zahariev. “I have always tried to work with young people, Martin and Hristo are excellent professionals who will have the opportunity to learn from me and Alex,” Pardew said.

“I hope this will help them progress even more and have the opportunity to apply what we have learned,” the manager continued. “My goal is to leave a legacy in CSKA in the future and these young coaches who will work with us now, to be able to help the club in the coming years.”

Victory in the Bulgarian cup final would give Pardew’s side a qualifying place for the Europa Conference League, while they can also still qualify for the competition via their league position. The team took part in the new UEFA competition this season, but ended up with just one point after being drawn against Roma, Bodo/Glimt and Zorya Lukansk in the group stages.

The previous season, they had finished bottom of their Europa League group. On both occasions, they had to go through multiple qualifying rounds to book their place in the tournament proper.

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Pardew had already been in interim charge at CSKA Sofia
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It’s a first managerial role for Pardew since the 2019-20 season, when he was in charge of Dutch side ADO Den Haag. He won just one of his eight games with the Eredivisie club, but they avoided relegation after the Covid-19 pandemic caused the season to be curtailed.

His last Premier League job was short-lived, as he took over at West Bromwich Albion midway through the 2017-18 season with the Baggies 16th in the league. When he was dismissed in April, they sat bottom of the table.

CSKA’s squad includes a handful of players who may be known to English fans. Irish midfielder Graham Carey has been playing in Sofia since joining from Plymouth Argyle in 2019, while Surinamese international Yanic Wildschut played for several clubs in the Championship and League One.

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