While some fans would happily talk about stringing Mike Ashley up from the nearest lamppost when he was dragging the club down to the Championship with shocking decisions one after the other, I wouldn’t mind guessing these are the same people who now slaughter anybody who dares to suggest that Ashley is doing anything deserving of criticism.
On this website I’ve regularly seen writers making valid points about the renaming of the ground and the gratuitous Sports Direct advertising inside St.James’ Park, only for a hardcore to blindly defend any action of Ashley. Usually on the basis of ‘we’re in fifth why are you moaning’?
That obviously opens up the question though of what would those same people be saying if Newcastle ended up in the bottom three, I’m guessing it wouldn’t be ‘we’re in nineteenth why are you moaning’?!!
Obviously we are all desperate for the team to finish as high as possible this season but we also need to be concerned about the future. Things seem to be working out OK at the moment but as well as great decisions like recruiting Alan Pardew and Graham Carr, we certainly carried our luck at times last season, in certain matches and especially with injuries.
Naturally we ALL want this success to be built on strong foundations and not to dramatically crumble like happened after the departures of Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby.
Mike Ashley has made clear the club needs to be self-sustaining long-term and I have no problem with that, in fact I welcome it because living within your means makes Newcastle a sustainable club no matter who is running it.
As I understand it, without any revenue coming into Newcastle United, Mike Ashley has the stadium sponsorship, an overwhelming share of the advertising displayed inside St.James’ Park, logos on all the training kit, Sports Direct signs in background whenever you see any training ground footage and numerous other advantageous links for his non-Newcastle United business empire.
How much would all of that add up to if it offered on the open market? Would that money help Alan Pardew, Graham Carr, the squad, Newcastle United?
As an illustration, Virgin Money are reported to be paying £10m a year to be our main sponsor and have their logo on the shirts, amongst other things.
Watch below the interview Alan Pardew gave after the Spurs match and as always he is well worth listening to….but also look behind him at the display of sponsors’ logos.
At most you can see 3 or 4 Virgin Money ones at any one time but up to 10(!) Sports Direct ones.
Again I ask the question, how much more commercial revenue could be brought into the St.James’ Park coffers to really take this squad forward?
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