Monday has seen constant queues for season tickets at St James Park, whilst the ticketing part of the official club website crashed as it struggled to cope with demand.
All of this for a club who have just been relegated – only at Newcastle.
This isn’t on the back of outrageous promises of Manchester City style spending or Leicester style silverware…..
Instead, this massive turn around in Newcastle supporter optimism and desire in many cases to once again buy a season ticket after an absence, is simply because Mike Ashley has at last seen fit to appoint a credible manager AND been forced to give him written assurances that he will be allowed to get on with the job as he sees fit.
There are no guarantees that we are going to walk the league, though it would be daft to not accept that the Premier League parachute money gives the relegated clubs a massive advantage.
However, the support of the fans (ED: By the way, the image above isn’t of fans queuing today, it wasn’t quite that mad…) is surely one other absolutely crucial advantage, with Newcastle potentially playing to full houses despite the drop into the Championship.
I was stuck in the queue today for around two hours and whilst Mr Ashley could certainly have employed one or two more ticket office staff and poured a bit more diesel into the club website ticket bit – what you couldn’t deny is the mood of those queuing for the season tickets today.
It is all a bit bizarre that if say Steve McClaren had stayed and Newcastle had just clung onto their Premier League lives, today’s season tickets going on general sale would have been met with total indifference by the fanbase.
Bear in mind as well that the club haven’t signed a single player yet AND Rafa Benitez hasn’t made any outlandish promises as to what is going to happen in the transfer market – it just makes this blind faith/positivity all the sweeter.
Newcastle hold the record for second tier football, with a mindblowing home average attendance in 1947/48 of 56,299, but United’s 43,384 average in 2009/10 should be well within our grasp despite a 23 home fixture season that will see a lot of midweek games and surefire grand scale meddling by Sky.
I don’t know what will happen after this year but I’m back at St James Park as a season ticket and really looking forward to watch the lads against Burton and Rotherham.
I go to watch Newcastle United and not the opposition, thanks to Rafa Benitez I can once more start going again to watch my team.