There is no doubt that the removal of Steve McClaren is long overdue.

Last season’s Championship table and the Premiership this season have shown him to be not qualified to be a coach or manager at the highest level. The tables talk, they don’t lie and show he is inept and completely out of his depth. However, the brief McClaren reign is just a symptom of the more deep-rooted causes of our problems.

Mike Ashley, despite his statements of good intent and spending, usually when under pressure, regards Newcastle United as a plaything.  He has no respect for the City (of Newcastle) or its fans. How else would you delegate responsibility to Newcastle United Board members Lee Charnley and Graham Carr, who have proven themselves to be incompetent since being appointed.

He has allowed them to appoint a serial failure as manager and, apart from the odd successful buy, to acquire players who have not been up to the job and usually bought for the wrong positions. Every fan could have told them we needed a centre back, a left back and a decent striker.

Forget the arguments that Ashley played his part and invested in new players; this was only when our EPL status was threatened. He is culpable through his senior appointments.

How many clubs in our position would have had a full stadium yesterday?

Ashley and his hirelings continue to treat us with disdain, no, contempt. McClaren might be gone soon but we will still be left with a useless management team who have presided over failure at very team level within the club and have no obvious blueprint for maintaining our Premiership status, never mind progression.

It’s hard to blame McClaren for getting on board the NUFC gravy train, even though he probably knew he couldn’t do the job. We know who the guilty parties are.

Apart from two occasions, we have never really had decent management teams at Newcastle and the fans have never enjoyed even a modicum of success that their support deserves.

No doubt we will soon be hearing from the usual pundits, the bull about the unrealistic expectations of The Toon Army. We have no expectations other than hoping for a supportive management board and a team that gives its all.

McClaren’s removal, if it happens, will be a brief respite. The only thing that will keep us all going is the hope that Ashley will be gone one day and replaced with an owner who sees our club as an important part of the regional community and fans as valued stakeholders.

While we are dreaming, at least we know that no other self-respecting club would employ any members of the current Newcastle United board, so others will not have to endure our pain.

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