In the end, Newcastle United fans might not realise exactly what they have until it leaves for Crystal Palace, as the old saying almost goes.
For so long a figure of derision at St James’ Park, Alan Pardew nevertheless managed to produce good results year after year despite the animosity that surrounded him.
Indeed, the 53-year-old could easily be viewed as the victim of his own success at times at Newcastle.
Everytime the club achieved a top-half finish under his tenure, Mike Ashley was able to safely ignore the need for investment in the side, and when players shone they were quickly sold.
Pardew, aided by some clever scouting, generally kept the team on an even keel despite the obstructions created by his owners, and even took the Magpies to fifth in 2011/12.
Now he has a chance to do more than just muddle along at a club, as while Crystal Palace are not as a big a side as Newcastle, Pardew should be backed to the hilt from all angles.
Although he wasn’t the most popular figure for much of his time at Selhurst Park as a player, an FA Cup semi-final winner against Liverpool in 1990 meant that the chants of ‘Super, Super Al’ lost much of their irony.
With the Eagles fanbase behind him, along with Steve Parish, who said recently he cried because of Pardew’s winning goal, the soon-to-be-ex Magpies boss has the chops to flourish.
Alongside the success he has achieved at Newcastle, where he won the Manager of the Year award in 2011/12, Pardew also impressed in his early-career stints at Reading and West Ham.
The 53-year-old took the Royals up to Division One in 2002, where they finished fourth in their first season back in the second-tier.
His time at the Hammers did not end well, but Pardew also gained a promotion at the Boleyn Ground, guiding West Ham into the Premier League in 2005, before achieving a top-half finish and an FA Cup final appearance the season after.
Brief spells at Charlton and Southampton somewhat dented Pardew’s reputation, but after the job he has done at Newcastle, he is firmly established as a fine top-flight manager, and one well-used to working under taxing circumstances.
He might not be able to produce the miracles Tony Pulis managed last term, but with Pardew in charge, it’s certainly worth backing Palace to avoid the drop at 9/20, and the Eagles could go from strength to strength under Super Al in the coming years.