Newcastle United – Everything Is Broken
It’s often used but there’s no escaping the seemingly timeless cliche that nothing is ever simple at St. James’ Park.
The rollercoaster ride goes ever on, with spells where goals abound and famous victories give us dreams of elusive silverware, but heartbreak is always around the next corner. Most would have it no other way, mid-table obscurity doesn’t set the pulses racing or the veins bursting.
Despite an (unfounded) reputation for delusions of grandeur and sky high expectations, Newcastle fans don’t actually ask for much. We understand that we will probably never compete for league titles and with the top heavy finances of the select few, another run at Champions League campaign seems out of the question too.
We also recognise our place in the food chain and if the price is right (Cabaye, Ba and Carroll), we don’t have the power to hold on to our star players. We do however expect a certain level of reinvestment in the playing staff and ideally would love to see a team who try and outscore opposition (who doesn’t?) and maybe even have a cup run every now and then. Trophy cabinets gather a lot of dust in 40 years…
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Under an owner whose vision doesn’t stretch beyond cold hard capital, the life is being sucked out of a club that represents not just Saturday entertainment but the city of Newcastle and the North East of England.
Mike Ashley shows nothing but utter contempt towards his paying customers, not even speaking to defend himself from the latest soul destroying enterprise, nor gives his vision for the future. It seems scandalous that this can happen, the community spirit and euphoria that only a football club can bring, goes way beyond the power of capitalism and greed.
Money has poisoned the once innocent game and there is no turning back.
Ashley is not the only figure of derision at this club however; Alan Pardew has inflicted his fair share of misery on Newcastle supporters
throughout his four season reign at the club.
His vast array of pathetic excuses; ranging from ‘the local media’ to ‘the Notting Hill Carnival’ and the recent ‘fans were too excited’, infuriate rather than placate fans who see only ineptitude from a manager way out of his depth. And his blatant lies about incoming and outgoing players takes the fan base for fools.
Tactical inadequacies and indefensible substitutions are witnessed week on week, and his favourite tactic of bringing on left-backs when chasing a game now seems like self-parody.
Young players fail to reach their potential under his guidance with: Shane Ferguson, Sammy Ameobi, Gael Bigirimana and Haris Vuckic all failing to break though in recent years.
Such failings could possibly even be forgiven if the manager had any sort of rapport with the fans but the dignity and class of Sir Bobby and Chris Hughton is long gone, instead Pardew drags the club through the dirt by insulting superior managers or head-butting opposition players.
Despite last season’s appalling finish, some were prepared to give him one final chance this August after a long awaited influx of reinforcements, except this time no excuses were to be accepted.
But three poor performances and ‘a could be catastrophic September the 1st deadline closing’ later, Pardew once again is public enemy number one on Tyneside.
Transfer deadline days yield only false promises and un-replaced departures, Monday was no different.
The talented but so far inconsistent Yanga-Mbiwa was shipped out on loan to Roma early on, leaving the club desperately short in defence, but there was more to come. With 3 hours to go Pardew finally severed ties with the most gifted individual at the club in many a year.
It’s no surprise a Che Guevara inspired ‘hope’ banner with Hatem Ben Arfa’s face adorned the Gallowgate, the mercurial and anti-establishment forward has become a cult figure of resistance against the regime in charge.
On his day there aren’t many players like Ben Arfa in the Premier League, he can dance and weave through any defence but his apparent character flaws and lack of support defensively have ultimately cost him his place. Pardew’s treatment of the player over recent months shows his hypocrisy and lack of reconciliation.
Yohan Cabaye refused to play for the club last year yet was welcomed back the very next week, while Ben Arfa was desperate to play yet was completely cut off from the first team with the ineffectual Yoan Gouffran or Gabriel Obertan preferred.
It once again leaves many fans questioning their loyalty to the club. It is about time some action is taken.
Continuing to support the club by going to games every week is akin to a blind sheep following its master.
Empty seats are the only catalyst for change we posses. How has it come to this point?
In 2014 everything at Newcastle United is broken.
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