Newcastle and Gateshead – Working together for a great future
Newcastle United – Love thy neighbour…don’t worry, I haven’t gone over to the dark side promoting mutual love between the mackems and ourselves.
No, it is our friends and neighbours just a Cheick Tiote dodgy shot away on the other side of the Tyne, Gateshead.
Newcastle and Gateshead – Working together for a great future.
Obviously we are all pre-occupied with the usual drama and nonsense at St.James’ Park, but a growing number of Newcastle fans are taking an interest in the fortunes of the ‘Heed’.
For so long a bit of a joke, Graham Wood has transformed the Tynesiders’ fortunes, a major achievement considering the heavyweights that now make up the Conference, which is basically just another division of the Football League now.
Many predicted Gateshead might struggle after last season’s near miss at Wembley (see photo) but with almost half the season gone, the team are bang in the middle of the play-off places once again.
Not only that, but a remarkable transformation has also taken place on the terraces, considering the struggles in recent times, it is a sign of massive progress that every single Conference crowd at the International Stadium has been in four figures.
The Newcastle influence has played an important part, hundreds of United fans have taken a growing interest in Gateshead’s fortunes – whether they have had enough of Mike Ashley, or simply want to support another local club when Newcastle aren’t playing. A process helped by discounted offers to NUFC season ticket holders.
A strong Gateshead can only be a positive for Newcastle United, Tom Heardman is only the latest to cross the Tyne on loan and the higher the level the Heed are playing at, all the better for United’s developing players.
Whilst clubs in the north west and elsewhere have numerous clubs on the doorstep to loan emerging players to, getting Gateshead into the Football League would be a massive boost all round.
Adding to the positivity (and revenue!), Gateshead now stand on the brink of the third round of the FA Cup, with a home tie against Warrington to navigate.
As well as owner Graham Wood, if you are looking for a manager who has worked wonders, then look no further than Gary Mills.
It’s amazing to think that Mills has only been at Gateshead for fourteen months, coming within a whisker of League Two in May and now in the middle of yet another promotion push – not forgetting dreams of Cup glory.
No disrespect to Alan Pardew but it is also worth mentioning that it is ironic that the manager of our neighbours, is also the holder of a European Cup winners medal, a part of the Nottingham Forest team that won the premier European competition under Brian Clough in 1980.
There is also a very special night laid on for you to see Gateshead’s Gary Mills, only three days before that FA Cup second round match.
It is Thursday 4th December at Gateshead Fell Cricket Club, an event compered by Radio Newcastle’s Matthew Raisbeck, with comedian Seth Shildon also on the bill.
Included in the ticket price is also the obligatory Pie and Pea supper as well.
The tickets are only £10 and available from the cricket club in person, or by calling 0191 420 0160
A chance to hear how Gary Mills has revolutionised the prospects of Gateshead as they dream of a return to the Football League, as well as the FA Cup adventure.
No doubt Gary will also have one or two Cloughie stories to share, plus how neighbours Newcastle United and Gateshead can work together for a great mutual future.
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