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Why Champions League Qualification Would Terrify Mike Ashley

8 years ago

My wife used to always watch those programmes where somebody buys a house/flat in a rundown state and tries to do it up and make a profit.

They were all the rage a number of years ago (when the housing market was booming) and often followed the same route – loads of mistakes and daft decisions and when it came to an end valuation…they’d made a big profit.

However, that was only because the house market was booming and every house in the bloody street had gone up by X amount of money, so if the knackers had bought the rundown house/flat they’d probably have made more money by doing nothing and selling it on in the same state 6 months down the line!

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My point is that these days every club in the Premier League should now make a profit unless they decide not to (Manchester City etc – spending massive amounts on transfers that they know will = a massive loss but don’t care).

Next season Newcastle will get something like £70m+ windfall from broadcasting, Ashley hasn’t performed a miracle in the club making a profit now, it is despite him. He almost got the club relegated last season because of last summer’s (non-) transfer fiasco and then his brilliant financial management would’t have quite the same look if due to his short-sighted greed/stupidity the club would be getting a £12m parachute payment instead of £70m+ PL riches this coming season.

As for his ‘plan’, I believe that after relegation his basic plan is just to reduce costs as much as possible and thereby a guaranteed profit every season just so long as we stay in the PL, with the new TV deal he sees that as a chance to take at least £30m out against his ‘loan’ (investment/piggy bank!) to the club, before eventually selling and walking away with a guaranteed profit.

Mike Ashley didn’t invest on back of 5th place/Europa League qualification and mad as it seems, I think the very same would have happened if Champions League had happened.

Ashley’s low (no) risk strategy would never have allowed for  3 or 4 really good signings to be able to have a go at the CL, as by signing them he would have to give them 4 year minimum contracts and his reasoning would be what is the point of that when we might only be in it for one year and risking £60m (transfer fees & wages) to try and win £100m+ just isn’t worth the bother, especially when he never knows from one season to the next if he will still be at St.James’ Park.

It is almost impossible for Newcastle to be successful under Ashley as no way would he do what Swansea are doing now – investing in the squad on the back of their breakthrough season.

Sad but true.

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