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On this day in 2008: Newcastle part company with Sam Allardyce

Soccer – Barclays Premier League – Newcastle United v Arsenal – St James Park
(Image credit: Owen Humphreys)

Newcastle parted company with Sam Allardyce just eight months into his reign at St James’ Park on this day in 2008.

Allardyce admitted his exit from Newcastle had come as a shock, as the Magpies began to look for their eighth manager in 11 years.

The then 53-year-old paid the price for a run of poor league form and a style of play which received criticism from many of the club’s supporters.

Despite the club claiming the decision had been reached by mutual consent, it came as a surprise to Allardyce, who had earlier conducted his press conference for the weekend clash with Manchester United.

Barclays Premier League – Newcastle United v Arsenal – St James’ Park

Sam Allardyce came under pressure from new Newcastle owner Mike Ashley (Owen Humphreys/PA)

Allardyce told Sky Sports News: “I’m disappointed obviously but I’d just like to wish everybody at Newcastle all the best for the future and I hope things go very, very well.”

Allardyce had been appointed by former chairman Freddy Shepherd but just over a week after his arrival, billionaire Mike Ashley launched his £134.4million takeover.

The new regime handed Allardyce their backing and helped fund a summer rebuilding programme which took place amid mounting unrest over the club’s vision.

Soccer – Newcastle Press Conference – St James’ Park

Sam Allardyce’s Newcastle reign soon turned sour (John Giles/PA)

But despite starting the season with a 3-1 win at his former club Bolton, the Magpies’ results soon dipped and of his 24 games in charge, Allardyce won just eight and drew six.

Ashley courted the popular vote by reappointing Kevin Keegan in Allardyce’s place, but their relationship soon turned sour and Keegan would depart in September, citing a lack of financial support from the board.

Allardyce resurfaced in December when he was appointed as manager of Blackburn, who he saved from relegation, and with whom he would remain until his dismissal in December 2010.