Pardew sets sights on overtaking Newcastle
Alan Pardew hopes he can lead Crystal Palace above former club Newcastle United in the Premier League table, as his supreme return to Selhurst Park goes on.
Five wins in nine games since Pardew arrived at Selhurst Park have helped propel Palace from the Premier League relegation zone into the safe haven of mid-table - a position Pardew believes is "top of the league" compared to the club's ambitions.
A dominant 3-1 victory over QPR on Saturday - sealed by Wilfried Zaha, James McArthur and Joel Ward goals in the first half - moved Palace to 12th in the league, two points and one place below his former employers.
He said: "Mathematically of course we're not safe but were in a great position and we would have snapped someone's hand off for this position at this stage, whoever the manager was.
"I said to the players when I arrived to look above because if you look below - anxiety, pressure - you can't play like that, so we will look to Newcastle, whoever's above us.
"We're above Everton, that's a bit of a goal for us - can we stay above them?
"I think 11th, 12th is top of the league for this club, where we are at the moment.
"In the summer, if we're shrewd enough and clever enough it might not be, we might be able to better that."
Yannick Bolasie and Zaha lit up the victory at Selhurst Park, with the pair having a hand in all three goals between them, though Pardew was quick to temper talk of them being the best wide tandem in the Premier League.
"I wouldn't say they're the best wingers in the country but they're exciting," he added.
"There's two flaws really in their game. One is scoring goals and one is being disciplined in their defensive duty, two areas we've worked hard on them.
"But their individual talent, the way they go past players is purely from within and what they've learned in their culture around how they've been brought up."