Now that the season is over for Newcastle United after probably the worst January imaginable, with the recent removal of JFK though, I can’t help but feel that if a line can now be drawn in the sand.
So maybe now is the perfect time to look at the bare facts:
2. The club is doing well financially but this could be much, much better.
3. The club will always have the ability to attract good players.
4. Alan Pardew is at a crossroads as Newcastle United manager and the departure of Joe Kinnear can only strengthen his position.
5. Graham Carr is an excellent talent spotter and a valuable asset to the club.
6. Mike Ashley has no knowledge or clue of how to run a FOOTBALL CLUB – but he does have previous form on how to run and make profit from a BUSINESS.
Let’s tackle the points as I see it.
1.Like it or lump it, Mike Ashley is here for the indefinite future. The fans have little input in what Mike Ashley does. Protests and stay-aways will have the effect of taking a schooner of water from the Tyne.
Long gone are the club directors crapping themselves if the attendances drop below 30k for a league game. Freddy Shepherd would have had kittens and probably sacked the manager or bought a striker.
If Mike Ashley isn’t interested in making Newcastle United a successful club, then he can duly be criticised and the sooner a new owner found the better. If Mike Ashley has been all along winding us Geordies up and creating problems for us to get our backs up, then once again bye-bye and he should be investigated for deliberately running a football club down.
2. Advertising and sponsorship at the club needs to be completely overhauled. Having S****s D****t ablaze all over the club is nauseating and pointless as it doesn’t bring outside revenue into the club, but is Mike Ashleys right – like it or not.
Sadly the club marketing seems to be controlled by whoever is currently sitting at the company headquarters, which is basically an industrial estate unit in Shirebrook.
Finally, the involvement of W***a needs to be removed from the club as soon as is feasibly possible and an admission that it was a poor choice ratified by the owner. A global brand akin to Samsung or Sony for example, must surely be found. The days of a local sponsor like Newcastle Brown Ale pumping enough money in to sign the 2014 version of Alan Shearer isn’t going to happen, but I’ll be damned if W***a is a heavyweight puller of players across the globe, just ask Papiss Cisse.
3. We’ve had a good side over the last four years, in parts. For whatever (or whoever’s) fault, this was broken up and never really strengthened to accommodate injuries or the F.A/League cup or Europa League. A football club should want to be in Europe, should want to be having a cup run etc, etc. Selling players for profit is fine, selling players to more ambitious clubs is inevitable if you’re Newcastle and not part of a select few. Failing to show ambition and settling for being out of the cups and giving up the league at the first sign of safety is NOT fine and needs addressing.
4. Alan Pardew has been hung out to dry on too many occasions. His performances have been erratic over the course of the last 12 months, yes, but he has been used to a huge degree, made to look a fool, a liar and worse a manager than he actually is.
Jose Mourinho he isn’t and his detractors won’t like this, but he is a decent manager, probably about the right standard for the club at this moment in time and one that got us to 5th, on minimal spend – FACT. We couldn’t possibly attract a top, top manager as they will demand a hefty price to come in.
5. Budgets seem very vague at the club. But the fact of the matter is, release funds for players and the team will grow. Graham Carr has proven to spot a good player, which every now and again could turn a profit. This profit (not necessarily all of it) needs to be filtered back into the team in cold hard transfer fees.
6. Profit can still be made from Newcastle United (see parts 2 and 5) which can keep Mike Ashley and Newcastle United both happy. To do this, someone needs to be in place to advise the owner when and how much funding is required, someone with an idea on players values, someone who is of no threat to Alan Pardew and someone who the manager and chief scout can trust to get a player over that god forsaken line we keep hearing so much about. Who that person is is anyone’s guess.
So there you have it. Mike Ashley’s problems summed up.
He needs to appoint a Marketing Manager with a football mindset and make the club more global.
Appoint a Director of Football who knows what the hell he’s doing, who is up to date and relevant with the modern game.
Cup competitions need to be treated seriously, squad rotation is fine, but the aim of the game is still to win a trophy.
That’s the football business. The manager needs to be backed, if he isn’t the man for the job, then his replacement likewise. Next, the logic of selling before buying is flawed in many ways, but if it must occur, replacements need to be earmarked and actively pursued in good time.
If Mike Ashley isn’t up for the job and wants to continue on this present course, then he can find a buyer, get the hell out and stop wasting his and our time.
The last month has and is trying a lot of people’s patience, many pushed to breaking point. That’s not what football is about. It’s about history, tradition and above all else, enjoyment. All three are currently in danger of becoming extinct.
Get it sorted!