But, after considering the merits of Townsend versus those already under his charge - including the likes of Hatem Ben Arfa - Pardew opted against a bid.
"We know (Townsend) because there was talk of him going out on loan," Pardew told Sky Sports' Goals on Sunday.
"Obviously, when you look at his career, he's been out on loan a number of times and we looked at him this year and thought 'would he interest us?'.
"We weren't sure; I think that's where everybody was at the start of the season."
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