Using the current logic that comes out of Newcastle United and repeated by the journalists servile to them, it must be a positive that Mike Ashley is still to replace Demba Ba.

A full 17 days have passed since Alan Pardew jumped ship for Crystal Palace and we are told it is a good thing that the club are keeping their powder dry, making sure they get the right candidate and so on.

demba baI think we all accept that Mike Ashley is not in the middle of intense negotiations to get a currently employed top level manager out of his contract, haggling over compensation and so on, so what can justify the delay?

The Ashley NUFC mantra of course is ‘Getting by another season’, which brings us back to Demba Ba.

Newcastle needed a third striker back in 2012 to complement Ba and Papiss Cisse, plus give United insurance against Demba Ba eventually leaving via his selling clause, as had been heavily speculated in every transfer window he’d been at the club.

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Of course Newcastle sold Demba Ba AND bought no new striker in that January 2013 window.

It is now 2 years 10 days since Ba joined Chelsea and still Mike Ashley has refused to buy a replacement. Pardew as usual asked for one in the last summer window and instead of giving him a quality striker, he gave him a cut price journeyman in Emmanuel Riviere, who still hasn’t scored a Premier League goal five months later.

Of course as usual Ashley got lucky in that Ayoze Perez, a young support striker/linking midfield and attack player, has made the step up from the Spanish second division instantly and scored crucial goals that have made the difference between a relegation spot and mid-table…at the moment.

The team and club are staying afloat but as usual Mike Ashley has only allowed the one paddle so we are going around in circles, hoping that big wave doesn’t come along and sink us.

A bit like the signings Newcastle did make in January 2013 that ended up keeping Newcastle in the Premier League, if United were currently in immediate relegation trouble then Ashley would have appointed a manager/head coach by now.

As we are stuck in this mid-table spot for now, the only intention appears to be to do nothing, no new man in charge and no new players.

The only action by the club is getting pet journalists to tell us how hard Newcastle are working behind the scenes to get the new head coach in.

Would I have wanted either Alan Pardew or Tony Pulis? The easy answer is no because I wouldn’t.

However, do I think that the bloke we get next will be any better…I have my doubts, especially if he is going to be forced to work with the same coaching team and/or not given support via the transfer market.

There was real chance of momentum when Pardew left, supporters buoyed by separating from a managerial situation that had become entrenched negativity, on top of whatever failings Pardew actually had as a manager. If a new manager/.head coach had swept in then with a new coaching team and then being given a striker and centre-back by Graham Carr, then I think we could have seen a massive groundswell of both positive results and goodwill from the terraces.

demba baInstead we’ve had stagnation and John Carver the whipping boy as he’s taken Pardew’s place and said all the wrong things, as United have failed to win a game and dropped feebly out of the FA Cup.

The latest from the local press today is that it’s even a blessing in disguise as the two week gap due to no FA Cup fourth round, could/will allow a new man to bed in properly.

Managers come and go at clubs all the time and what happens at the vast majority is that there is an instant upturn thanks to a new man in charge, why would Newcastle be any different?

Unless United are persuading Sir Alex Ferguson to come out of retirement or paying good money to get a real up and coming coach/manager – foreign or otherwise, out of his contract, this current inaction is only doing the club harm.

At this rate it is hard to know where I’d put my money on – Newcastle replacing Alan Pardew or Demba Ba first?

City Hall Gifts -
  • radgiegadgie


  • magpiefifer

    The words Logic and NUFC (Ashley regime) should NEVER be put together!!!

  • DownUnderMag

    We did replace him, just not with players we expected to.  Riviere, how much did he cost?  His scoring record suggested he was the main striker, not Perez.  As it turns out Perez made the step up to Premiership level quicker and has looked a much better player, Riviere may come good yet, but he certainly wasn’t helped by Pardew’s insistence on playing him as an isolated lone striker with zero support. But the money was spent.  Just because the replacement hasn’t been at the level of Ba, it doesn’t mean you can just gloss over facts that a replacement WAS brought in…

    Now I am not Ashley’s biggest fan, I just think that in order to make the real points valid, people need to stop simply looking for mud to sling, it doesn’t help the cause and makes us all look like we are impossible to please.  Would fans be saying the same thing if Falcao was brought in and not made an impact as he has at Man Utd?
    Is a replacement only a replacement if they are successful straight away? If the money is spent, does it not count if the player doesn’t turn out to be a world class bargain?   We need to keep our feet on the ground, the scenario at NUFC is that we are forced to take chances, gamble on cheaper players.  not all of them will turn out to be superstars like Ba or Cabaye.   We seem to forget that perez came good out of nowhere, maybe because he had fewer expectations placed upon him.   We also forget the work done to secure Janmaat before letting Debuchy head off.   So let’s not look for negatives to hold against Ashley where there are none – there’s plenty that ARE there for us not to resort to being petty in twisting everything to suit our anti-ashley agenda…he does enough to support this cause himself…

  • magpiefifer

    DownUnderMag  Why do you label some valid (true) points as ‘mud slinging’!?
    Ashley shows only financial ambition and still sees 52,000 paying fans at SJP at most games – Toon supporters are NOT impossible to please! What we’d like is an owner who communicates and treats his paying customers with a bit of respect – not contempt!

  • radgiegadgie

    magpiefifer DownUnderMag Look., before Ashley, Newcastle were a mid-table team making a loss.  Now we are a mid-table team making a profit.  That’s the macro view.

    Like downundermag, I am not a fan of Mikey but people get their blind hate of him get in the way of rational thinking and just blurting out populist assertions.

    For me, I would like to see the club take the cups seriously, get in a manager who is capable of delivering entertaining and successful football (relative to the clubs means), get better at communication and try to move the club forward in terms of league position etc.  That’s it.  Mikey can do what he wants in terms of his inter company loans, merchandising, advertising, commercial revenue business development etc etc.

    If the guy sells up tomorrow, at least he would have left the club in a good position for someone else to invest time and money into.  That’s more than can be said for the last regime.

  • jimblag

    Bad grammar in the headline is pretty shoddy work guys.

  • LeazesEnder

    jimblag Is there an edit function…for the editor?

  • LeazesEnder

    radgiegadgie magpiefifer DownUnderMag  …’Newcastle were a mid-table team making a loss’
    ……No they bloody weren’t. the previous regome were milking the club for between ten and fifteen million per year…about the same as Ashley!

  • radgiegadgie

    LeazesEnder radgiegadgie magpiefifer DownUnderMag 
    I think you will find that they were making a loss prior to Mash.  Since then, operating costs have been slashed, in particular, players wages which were considerably higher.
    As I say, you can have ago at Ashley for many things, transforming the club from loss making to profitable is a fact.

  • DownUnderMag

    radgiegadgie LeazesEnder magpiefifer DownUnderMag every year Shepherd and Co got a huge wedge of shareholder dividend, so they still made out alright.  The difference was they did that by making the club relatively successful, maybe not in the trophy cabinet, but we were always in the top 20 “richest” clubs in world football.  Ashley makes a profit for himself by pure cost cutting but the clubs financial strength has actually deteriorated badly under his rule.  So while we may appear to be more financially stable, the club as a whole has actually lost revenue and profit – quite alarming given the increase in TV money!

  • DownUnderMag

    magpiefifer I think you missed my point on the “mud-slinging”, I wasn’t saying that all points people were making were in this category, just that we need to focus on facts rather than look for ammunition against Ashley by twisting everything to be a negative.  

    As I said, Ashley makes enough points for us to use against him without us looking for things that aren’t there.   Claiming that we still haven’t replaced Demba Ba is actually not true, unless the only way that would be fulfilled for some would be to actually buy Ba back.  All I was saying was that using the Ba case as a case against Ashley isn’t fair and makes us sound like we can’t ever be pleased, which as you say simply isn’t the case.  Riviere cost 6-8m depending on what you believe….either way that is pretty much what we got from Ba, so saying we didn’t buy a replacement is actually stirring the proverbial without due cause.  

    All I said was that there is plenty to focus on in the anti-Ashley campaign without making up fallacies or drawing dubious conclusions over anything and everything.  It’s a case of the boy who cried wolf, don’t make things there which aren’t or no-one will believe the facts when they are true…and we end up just being labelled whining ungrateful fair-weather fans or some other garbage from the press!

  • radgiegadgie

    DownUnderMag radgiegadgie LeazesEnder magpiefifer  Well I don’t think the TV money has come into to publicly available accounts yet.  Many estimate the club will make 50-70m in profits but that is speculation.  At the end of the day, as long as we get good football was does it matter if revenues are up or down so long as the club is nowhere near administration.  Makes no odds to me whether he make 20m or 30m.  Maybe that extra 10m could be used for a “ba” replacement but that guarantees nowt other than 10m spent..


    This one isn’t too fair to be honest.

    Last season they brought in Remy and de Jong, both on loan with a view to a permanent deal.  One of them played “too well” and in the end didn’t want to stay, and the other was woeful and got shown the door.  They were both international strikers with decent scoring records prior to arriving at the club, and Remy’s probably a better player than Ba anyway.

    This season they got in three strikers, four if you could de Jong who can play there.  Riviere looks to be a failure but seemed a decent bit of business at the time, Perez has been a roaring success and God knows what happened with Ferreyra.

    In that list you’ve got two players who are as good if not better than Ba in Perez and Remy.

    Would you rather have Perez now or Ba?

  • NatTurner

    JRWFSL Ba.

  • SimonM68

    Agree with a lot but not the easy dismissal of Pulis as a manager. Pulis is a master at making a silk purse from a sow’s ear ( ie getting the best from a limited squad. What he did at Palace last year to get them from bottom to 11th was unprecedented (I think?). I’d suggest he’s better than anything we’ll get in in the (foreseeable?) future and ideally suited to an Ashley regime.

  • Brownale69

    Err have the loans been paid off?


    NatTurner Even with the knee, age concerns, inability to play in a 4-4-2 with Cisse and unwillingness to play on the left wing of a 4-3-3 a la 2011-12?

    If Perez isn’t already better than Ba it’s hard to believe that he won’t be in a couple of years.  He absolutely terrifies defences.

    When Demba Ba himself was brought in people were very underwhelmed, especially given that they’d just banked the Carroll money and replaced him with a free transfer.

  • NatTurner

    JRWFSL He’s only 29.  I know we are all really excited about Perez, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.  He’s had a few good games.  I’m really excited about him too, but he isn’t a proven world beater yet.  Ba scored goals for fun at Newcastle, went to Chelsea and scored whenever he got put on, and is now scoring for fun at Besiktas.  Let’s both watch Liverpool-Besiktas in the Europa and then continue this conversation.