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Negotiations With Mike Ashley Needed

8 years ago
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I think it would be fair to say that this transfer window was more than a little disappointing for most Toon Fans.

The logic is fair – bring in a fitness expert to significantly reduce the injuries and we should make it into the top 10, but we didn’t get off to the best of starts losing Tiote and Jonas, did we?

While I’m mentioning the team – boys, do the decent thing and just put “Shola” and “Sammy” on the back of the shirts, we don’t need “Ameobi”. Anyway , I’m pretty sure that the ref can figure out that if he’s heading towards the goal and commits an offence it’s Sammy, and if he’s fouled someone having just lost the ball, or is lying on the ground it’s Shola!

As much as it was dismissed when it appeared a few days ago, an article from regular contributor Archie Brand pretty much summed up the problem and a piece yesterday from Rob Lackenby possibly adds the final piece to the jigsaw, but the problem is can we see past the red mist to objectively assess the situation and apply the remedy?

Archie tells us that Ashley will only leave when he gets all of his money back (loan and initial capital outlay) and a profit on top of that, and Rob tells us we need to sit and have a chat with Ashley along the lines of;

“Look, this just isn’t working. You clearly are not enjoying this and neither are we. Perhaps it would be better if we parted company and you were able to get the money you are owed. Why don’t we work together to bring this about?”

Obviously at the time Ash thought it would be a bit of a wheeze to own a football club, like his mates, buy a shirt with something funny on the back, wear a hairy scarf and watch the match with the common people.

The novelty however, soon wore off and if we think back to what now seems almost decades ago, our owner made a statement something like ‘don’t like this any more – not staying where I’m not wanted!’ and openly tried to sell the club.

Only problem was that with the amount he’d invested in initially buying the club, then taking over the loans to minimise interest,  the asking price was a bit steep.

Now we see a man who is bored with his new toy but needs  to get some big numbers off the books before he can sell.

I don’t think for a minute that he wants to be the Owner of Newcastle United anymore, but I also don’t think that he wants to lose £100million just to get out of it.

As Archie quite rightly said, by boycotting games and merchandise we are simply reducing the rate at which he recovers his initial outlay and effectively inviting him to extend his tenure.

Of course we are loathe to keep giving him money  because we have this idea that he’s just a greedy fat Cockney b**tard (or similar) who is stealing our money, though he might challenge that perception.

Perhaps, as my boss used to say, Rob hit the nail right between the eyes and the best way forward is through negotiation.

We would need to establish the rate at which Ashley is recovering his loan so that we could identify a sell by date. We would then all need to agree that NUFC will continue , business as usual, with the established fan base, until that point, at which Ashley would put the club up for sale.

This time, however, instead of being a club in turmoil at an over inflated price we would be debt free, stable, and with money in the bank. A much more attractive prospect.

There is one thing however that we may be overlooking. With the new FA regulations relating to expenditure and income, would we be able to find a buyer? If we did, they would not be able to plough in the type of cash that we have seen at Man City and Chelsea – the new rules strictly control that kind of “plaything” expenditure.

I can’t really take any credit for this amazing plan – I’m sure it’s pretty much along the lines of what Ashley and Lame-arse came up with a couple of years ago. A bit of austerity, get the club back on its feet, and at that point we can consider investment.

Or did I just imagine it all?

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