Pardew turns tough guy with the news that he wouldn't let ZiZi go home to China in late October to see his mum and at the same time take in their two World Cup games against Burma.
Is Pards turning political after the recent disturbing scenes of demonstrating Burmese monks running for their lives from gun-toting police and is he introducing his own sanctions against the ruling military junta? No, its because we have another burst of 3 fizzy pop games in a week just after the international break and we need our goalscoring midfielder ZiZi. Seems that "international break" doesn't translate too well into Chinese and the Chinese with that odd lunar calender of theirs have got the days mixed up and planned the games a week late.
So, what's that you say? Three games in a week again? Yes, after playing 7 games in 21 days, then nothing at all for 14 days due to the international break the madness starts again with a batch of 3 League games in 8 days. And this time there's a lot of travelling involved with the trio of games starting with a trip to Wolves on Saturday the 20th, then its all the way down to Plymouth for a Tuesday game then back home for QPR on the Saturday. Thats 750 miles in a week with 270 minutes of football thrown in which is all very well for the youngsters and even our 27 year-old Chinaman can handle it but Chrissie Powell must be right upset with the planners.
Over here in Spain there's no international break for Tier Two football, but while there's a few aging legends about, there's no such thing as a desperately needed international player for the calibre of Andy Reid either.
So perhaps with all these games coming up its no surprise to see a mention of new faces at the training ground last Friday as noticed by addickted. Seems our ex-Arse loanee, Alex Song, popped in for a bit of a run-about. Rather odd as the Arsenal Blogs claim he's out injured with a slight calf problem but whatever Alex, with just 18 minutes played in 4 substitute appearances this season, is obviously experiencing the wonderful impatience of youth and is getting fed up only playing for an average of 4.5 minutes per game and is desperate for action.
A full game in the Carling thing against Newcastle, where he played in central defence is not really what he has in mind, but perhaps Pards does as he could use Song for cover of just about anybody. And where better to go than back to where he is obviously appreciated, compared to the nagging doubts he seems to kindle among the Arsenal fans.
And with so much of our play currently going through skipper Reid perhaps its time for Pards to think about taking some of the creative strain away for our little irish fella.