Here’s a thought…

I would like to pose a question.

I have been saying for a while that, in my unconsidered opinion, the way that NUFC is being run is contrary to the accepted rules of competitive sport.

What I mean by this stems from when football was in its infancy and clubs like the Toon were being formed, it was in the spirit of togetherness and friendly rivalry, people supported their local team come what may and took it on the chin when they lost.

The raison d’etre of any competitive sport is to win, every game, never take the field with anything else in mind and the players give their all. Now I know of course that teams often lose but it comes very hard, winning is everything. We must strive to be the best we can be; this is the ethos around which the game as we know it has evolved… Until now that is.

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It is common knowledge that in recent seasons at NUFC there is no interest in cup competitions and the goal is to finish above the relegation zone in the Premier League to elicit huge TV revenue as cheaply as possible.

As a business model, given the prospective income, it must have the bank manager turning cartwheels. The trouble is it totally corrupts the purpose of the club, to run any sporting institution in this way would do the same. How do you manage the team when the cup is an unnecessary hindrance and you are content to finish fifteenth in the league?

There must be games when you do not put the strongest team out, deliberately; if you manage to nick the game all well and good, you can always put a weak team out in the next round and the fans are conned into thinking the club tried, if they lose – job done, now they can concentrate on finishing fifteenth by limiting investment and selling off the best players.

I know that the owners are entitled to try to make money but using a region’s football team as a way to promote another empire and to openly display total contempt for ambition, is rotten to the core.

The football authorities have a responsibility to see that football clubs are run in the right spirit, we often hear about due diligence and is a prospective owner a fit and proper person, well we all know what that means, how did they come by their wealth and is there anything in their past which would preclude them from owning one of our football clubs.

Well I believe there should be more to it than that. Having bought the club, what do they intend to do with it? Not many people could have imagined that the new owner, who is probably initially seen by tens of thousands of loyal fans as a saviour, was actually going to manipulate it for his own ends entirely to promote his business empire, with a total disregard for the sport or the reason the thing exists in the first place.

The question is this. As it stands Newcastle United Football Club is lost to its fans and there are only 19 competitive teams in the league.

Surely the FA, the Premier League, UEFA and more recently the SFA have a responsibility to make sure that all clubs are run in the right spirit, to always be the best they can be… Or deem the owner unfit?

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