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Sports Indirect

10 years ago

One of the harshest adverse criticisms of Mike Ashley is that he does not communicate with the fans.

Many fans do get emotional about the club, some of them more about a change of name rather than poor results.

As I have always felt, we fans can handle disappointment having had all the experience. Promotion after relegation is not a success, it is a relief.

Perhaps we should see the club from Ashley’s standpoint and be more objective than emotional. He is a successful businessman and if you contrast SD with JJB, the former is a huge success with a market value of over £1bn, the latter at only around £60m.

Size matters, Sports Direct annual revenues are around £1.6bn, with 10,000 employees and recent profits of £118m. Newcastle United’s revenue is only a very small percentage of that of Sports Direct.

So why should he worry, why should we care? He is not even a Geordie, not one of us, or am I being too emotional.

So why might Ashley care? He does not want even one of his smallest businesses to fail. This might be a blow to his ego.

He will not want to be vilified by the fans as he been over time. He does not come over as a ‘bighead’ but we can only assume he bought the club as a ‘vanity capitalist’, wanting the high profile of a football club owner, a profile that even owning a massive company with nearly 400 outlets would not bring.

So let us be optimistic and hope that although the club is small change in the context of Ashley’s empire, it will loom large as a symbol of that business empire and he will use his outstanding business talents to ensure it is a success.


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