ALAN PARDEW would prefer to be sat in the Newcastle United dug-out at Craven Cottage this afternoon, but thinks his suspension could lead to spending more time higher up in the stands.
The Newcastle boss begins a seven-match ban for his headbutt on David Meyler today and the first three of those stipulate he cannot even be inside the stadium.
Having been forced to take a backseat, including the four games where he will be back in the stands in the directors’ box, the 52-year-old hopes to have experienced a different side of management and something he could adopt more often.
"I'm certainly going to know in seven games' time if I like being up there,” said Pardew. “I'm not making light of the issue. I want to be in the stadium on Saturday. Fulham is close to my heart for a lot of reasons, but I'm not and I have to try to find a positive in it. That is how my brain works."
The Newcastle boss spoke extensively in his pre-match build about the need to curb his aggression in the technical area after being hit with the a combined £160,000 fine from Newcastle and the FA, and the seven-match ban.
His actions at the KC Stadium also brought unnecessary shame on him as a father and as a football manager keen to succeed in the game for the longer term.
He said: "I don't know what the hardest part of it all is other than it is difficult when you have an incident like that, you can't turn the clock back, for example.
“You have to find a way to accept it. That has probably been the most difficult thing, accept it, not shy away from it or bury my head in the sand. 'Come on, what are you going to do about it?' It's really what I am going to do.”
Yet having accepted his punishment from the independent regulatory commission – whose report was available for the Football Association to read yesterday – he is looking at the bigger picture.
Pardew said: "Maybe it's a period of redemption for myself. One thing I said after the game, even on reflection is an obvious one, is to sit down. Whether it is in the stand for the first half, which is something I might look at if, in the seven games, I can deal with that.
“I certainly feel for the last period of the game I will be on the bench in the future and it's my time out on the technical area I need to manage better. As I say, I will look to bring out in myself a better manager because of this situation.”