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The Biggest Problem At St.James’ Park Is The Newcastle Fans

9 years ago

I guess you can’t get away from the fact that some fans are of the ‘glass half full’ persuasion while others more recently seem to be leaning towards the ‘glass half empty’ camp.

Essentially, this well known analogy refers to what we make of the information put in front of us. How we choose to interpret that information. The attitude we take forwards with us.

I’m not talking about the grinning oaf brigade, who just wander round smiling ear to ear saying things like “it could be worse!”

I’m talking about the average fan.

Of course, it would make things a lot easier if we actually looked at the information first, rather than just, well, pulling ‘facts’ from our collective backsides.

The majority of recent articles published both on the net and in the press about Newcastle United seem to be attempting to solve the equation if A+B=C, and A = 2, what is X?

And they somehow manage to come up with an answer, which they firmly believe to be correct.

Not so much ‘glass half full / glass half empty’ as ‘there is no spoon’.

Possibly a good idea for a line in The Matrix but hardly the basis for an article.

Having watched Andy Murray win Wimbledon yesterday  it was obvious that he and Djokovic were both physically and mentally shattered, following 5 set semi-finals with only a couple of days to rest.

This must also be the case for many of the so-called ‘correspondents’ who appear to have spent the last 3 weeks exhausting themselves writing articles with no factual basis, or even accurate content.

This jumping to conclusions lark can be extremely tiring.

Of course, with the transfer window banging open a few days ago we were hardly jumping out of the way to avoid the stampede. We don’t do transfer stampedes at Newcastle. More ‘Transfer Trickles’.

We’ll get the usual barrage of entirely fictitious targets. This will be padded by agents trying to convince the world that we have spoken to their clients. And in amongst all that nonsense there may be a smattering of legitimate names. But who knows how to filter those ones out? No seriously, does anyone know? I normally work on the assumption that if it’s being reported – don’t believe it.

The biggest problem during this midsummer chaos isn’t the club, or the journalists, or the agents. The biggest problem is the fans.

We get caught up in the excitement – the furore. The momentum carries us along and before you know it we are shouting for the Owner to sell, the Director to leave and claiming that the only person we trust is the Manager, who we wanted out last month, but now it fits in more with our mob driven agenda if we say we like him and portray him as an object of pity.

So – let’s take a look at the facts. Just the facts. Not between the lines. No jumping to conclusions.

1              After a terrible season and narrowly avoiding relegation the club held a ‘Season Review’.

2              Apparently, as a result of this review, Ashley brought in Kinnear.

3              Liambas resigned.

That’s about it really. Nothing else confirmed by anyone at the club, or otherwise genuinely in the know.

So everything beyond that is speculation and guesswork.

We don’t know why Deke buggered off. Regardless, he left us in good financial shape. The media has suggested he wasn’t happy with Kinnear, but no solid quotes. Odd really considering that he would have played a major part in recruiting Kinnear in 2008.

Ashley did not then put the club up for sale, for any amount. He even officially denied doing so, a huge step for a man who is usually only quoted in the papers as saying “17 black and another Gin and Tonic Please”, but the press just moved from saying he was selling, to saying he was selling “for 267 million”. Of course we know he’s not. I’ll touch on that later. Sorry – probably not supposed to say things like that these days.

OK – Kinnear may have pulled the plug on Douglas – not surprising if he did, as he walks in the door responsible for all transfer activity. It’s called due diligence, something Ashley failed to properly execute when he bought the club, and ended up being conned by Hall and Oates. Sorry , Hall and Shepherd.

Pardew went on holiday. He goes on holiday with his family every summer for a few weeks before coming back for summer training. That’s actually a fact. Not made up. No sensationalism.

Before going, and following Kinnear’s appointment, Pards said publicly that he was “staying with the club” and off he went. Abroad. Away from the media. Now, that was a fairly straightforward statement, hardly open to interpretation (or should that be ‘misinterpretation’?)  so not having anywhere to run with those words the press (and internet more so) went instead with the idea that Ashley was trying to get Pardew to quit.  All of this crap that he is ‘in hiding’ and has said nothing is simply media hype. I would suggest that if he’s hiding from anyone, he’s in hiding from the fans. Especially those with low IQs and wireless keyboards.

As soon as Pardew was back in country, Kinnear went on holiday. This would be a normal business arrangement. Director and Manager can’t go on their hols together – somebody has to stay on board and look out for Icebergs.

They may have done something resembling a ‘hand-over’ in a car park on the M1 somewhere and Pards will be fully aware of what’s going on and will have his hand on the tiller. Bit of advice Alan – Put your life vest on first, mate. Tin hat wouldn’t go amiss either.

On a completely unrelated note, Shearer’s bar was refitted and renamed. A process that would have been planned months ago, long before this latest fiasco, but it’s yet another opportunity for the press and disgruntled fans to come up with a solution for X. Some of the cleverer hacks (isn’t that like saying ‘faster snails’?) even made a point of saying it was ‘probably’ unrelated to Shearer’s spat with Kinnear, but still felt the need to mention it.

No doubt by the time we get halfway through August and Bale, Baines, Rooney and Oxlade-Chamberthing have failed to appear at SJP there will be some serious whinging to be done by the fans, but the first week in July is surely just a tad premature for this, is it not?

Ashley has been described as a businessman who “parks his tank on other peoples lawns”. Kinda suggests he doesn’t really care what people say or think.

Ranked as one of the richest men in the UK I would suggest that he is trying to make a profit with Newcastle United. I appreciate many of you find that shameful, and a disgrace, and would prefer the club to have continued full tilt towards bankruptcy, but stick with me for a minute.

I would suggest he’s serious about us being successful.

He will have a plan.

Not so much a Blackadder-type “cunning plan my lord” as a 5, 7 or more realistically even a 10 year plan.

The plan will include NUFC becoming completely self sustaining, profitable and will hopefully include the requirement for an extension. Not, this time to the physio room, as we have come to expect, but this time to the trophy cabinet. Somewhere in his plan may be a requirement to have us all eating jellied eels, slapping each other on the back shouting “Awight Mayt?”, but that might be a bit too ambitious.

TV money is essential so we are looking at continued Prem survival.

Each position in the league is worth a million so top half gets Mike an extra night on the town, and hopefully the kitchen staff a bonus.

Europe – the real one, not the one with an ‘a’ on the end where you play 45 extra games and get vouchers for a cruise – could be even more lucrative, so that’s got to be worth a punt.

Essentially we should be looking at something like “Investment – Improvement – success – profit – investment”, which keeps the fans happy.

Success requires – and no one is in any doubt here – investment.

Is there anyone out there who truly believes that Mike Ashley wants the Toon to be unsuccessful? So how do you think that would work then?

So while you may not like him, or like his methods, he wants the same thing for the Toon that the fans want, though maybe for a different reason.

According to today’s reports Kinnear is now responsible for persuading Ashley to part with the dosh to buy the right players. Something Pardew didn’t do too well last season.

We do know that Kinnear, however ineloquent he may be, is capable of using a telephone, though I have no doubt that he already has his list of targets in with Club Secretary Lee Charnley, who Pardew said is responsible for “getting them over the line”, so let’s not jump to the conclusion that everything stops because Joe is off to “Sardinneria”. However sensationalistic we can make his holiday sound, it really is nothing out of the ordinary.

He’s not running training and he’s not responsible for tactics. He’s responsible for bringing in a broader depth of talent; providing a better squad than the one that cost us so dearly last year; basically taking a load from Alan Pardew’s plate and making his life just a little easier. It’s possible that he may also have been brought in to provide sufficient manure to keep the training pitch and SJP in top condition.

The players that other teams are bringing in this early are either free agents or 5 million pound players being sold for 8 or 9. They are getting in there first. If Carr produces his usual form we can expect a few ‘cheaper’ and ‘better’ players through the door with possibly a couple of ‘experienced’ lags to help out.

Hopefully a little less ‘experienced’ than Sol Campbell or Shefki Kuqi, but the experience we may actually need.

A week into the transfer window is not the time to be turning up at the gates of SJP with pitchforks and blazing torches.

August the first, now that’s the time to start kicking off.

Until then, who would want to sign up for Newcastle with the club going through such a transition and the fans baying for blood? Hardly instills confidence.

We really are our own worst enemies.

Sit back. Chill for a month. And how about we just sit back and see what happens. And let’s try to make an extra effort not to get tanked up and start spraying messages on walls with aerosols.

Oh by the way. Al and Joe – just get the players you want. No need to run them by me first.

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