Sack Lee Charnley.

Sack Steve McClaren.

Sack Graham Carr.

All views that have been shared on The Mag and other forums recently.

Superficially, it’s hard to disagree with sacking any of them. However, what would change if we did sack one of them?

The majority of the players we have now are the same ones that didn’t perform for Pardew for over a year, didn’t perform for John Carver for half a season and haven’t performed for the first 16 games (counting cup games) of this season.

We know they’re capable of playing well – remember the Gouffran we bought? Energetic, running with the ball, scaring defenders, scoring his fair share of goals.

So why don’t they play to their capabilities? Why are they played off the park by Bournemouth, Leicester and Crystal Palace?

For me the blame has to lie solely at the top of the club, with the owner. It’s been coming for years, since we finished 5th and didn’t bother to strengthen properly. To blame one of his minions is a waste of time, and simply plays into Ashley’s hands. He can sack them and say ‘I did what you wanted – what more can I do?’

The whole club is rotten from top to bottom. Replacing McClaren, Carr or Charnley would be akin to running a mouldy apple under the tap – nothing would change – the apple would still taste disgusting and make you ill. The club would still be owned by Mike Ashley and be a soulless shell of what it was. There would still be a sickening culture of mediocrity.

I liked it in 1993 when we came up to the Premier League. Watching back the ‘Entertainers’ 93-94 season review video, you see Kevin Keegan speaking about banning the word ‘consolidation’ from the club – he was in the Premier League with the intention of winning it. When Keegan came back in 2008 it was (briefly) exciting again.

The only person who can change things at the club is Mike Ashley.

Will he do it? I can’t see it myself. In my opinion he’s still sulking about the backlash from Keegan being forced out, and he holds a grudge. He’s enjoying the free advertising he gets from the club. He’d like the TV money next season, but he has so much money he doesn’t need it. I can’t see him fighting for it. I can’t see anything but relegation in May. I hope I’m wrong, because this time we don’t have the characters to bounce back like we did in 2009/10.

There have been stories in the press lately linking Kevin Nolan with a return to the club. I don’t doubt that he loves the club and would do everything he could to help. But, he’s just one man. A player well past his best, who hasn’t played since May. If he came in to help the coaching, would he make a difference? Do our foreign players really care about the city of Newcastle and our proud old football club? Some of them definitely do, but I don’t think the majority do.

What’s the solution?

I don’t know. Fan ownership doesn’t seem to be practical. There’s no ‘Geordie Abramovich’ waiting to buy us. I’m not convinced a foreign owner would be any better (Vincent Tan anyone?).

With any luck Ashley will bump his head and have a complete change of personality… Even then it would take years to rebuild the club properly – there’s no quick fix.

The football club I love is broken. I haven’t been to a game this season, I went to three last season. I struggle to build up any enthusiasm to watch us on the TV. But I can’t walk away and turn my back on the club entirely.

Following Newcastle United – a thoroughly depressing hobby!

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