I have been trying very hard to put into perspective my relationship with Newcastle United.

Ever since I saw my first game at Ewood Park back in 1982 (which was Keegan’s 2nd game as a player – he scored and we won 2-1) I was hooked.

The return fixture at St James will also live long in my memory, a 3-2 victory, I even managed an appearance on Match of the Day.

(To feature like Dale, send in your articles for our website to [email protected] – all views are the author’s own etc etc)

It was a love affair I didn’t ever think would end, girlfriends came and went but Newcastle was always there. It was that woman your mother warned you about, the one who would constantly break your heart but you’d keep going back for more because you had that hope something would change.

There was always the hope that next year was going to be the year, maybe we might win a cup, get promotion, win the league…or get into Europe.

Hope. That was the key word, we always had it, that created the magic, the wonder, the conversations in the pub or the workplace.

Most of the time it was just that, hope, with the exception of a few glorious years under Keegan and then Robson, where we came so close to achieving our dreams.

People often accuse Newcastle fans of expecting to something every year but we don’t, we HOPE we will win something every year. We do however expect that everyone who pulls on a black and white shirt gives everything every game.

Recently however, that hope has been taken from us. Ashley has made clear he doesn’t want to win trophies or get into Europe and only wants to finish in the top 10.

This reminded me of Christmas 1984.

Prior to 1984 Christmas had been full of wonder, this magical man would fly to my house on his sleigh pulled by reindeer, land on my roof and bring me wondrous gifts.

The magic and excitement of coming down the stairs on Christmas morning was a feeling you can’t put into words.

1984 though was the year that I found out the truth. It wasn’t a magic man in a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer, it was my ‘magic’ dad (and mam) and that ruined the excitement ,the wonder, the magic and the hope.

Christmas after that just wasn’t the same, yes I’d still celebrate it and get presents but that magic just wasn’t there anymore, this is how I feel about Newcastle right now.

The magic, the wonder and the hope is gone. Now I only have the reality of the situation and that isn’t good.

Newcastle United is still there, but like Christmas, the magic has gone.

City Hall Gifts - shop.themag.co.uk

  • pissed off mag

    I took that picture

  • Toon69

    You read my mind fella, it’s entirely as you described it, a love lost that can never be replaced!

  • NotFatFreddy

    Suffering as a toon fan is always for better or worse.  One day we look like we are in the 3rd then the next day it seems Keegan will win every trophy.  One day it is Bobby Shinton then it is Alan Shearer.

    1977-8 Walsall v.Dagenham (H) 1-0 FA Cup

    NUFC were playing Villa away, got there on a supporters bus at 12.30 and the game had just been postponed. The Police in their wisdom decided to ‘force’ us all to attend the above match.  Several hundred toon fans on a freezing cold day stood supporting Dagenham and badly out of pocket. The bus broke down on the way ‘home’.  But it did make me wonder at the loyalty of Walsall and Dagenham fans who turn up through thick and thin…with mostly ‘thin’ to look forward to.

    Maybe that is what we miss?  Just being able to support the club as ‘fans’ rather than sat in silence on Club Ashley’s seats. 

    Two questions that bother me:

    1) Would you rather watch what we have seen the last 3 seasons for the next decade with no cup runs and finishing around 12th to 14th and guaranteed Premiership survival.  Or have Ashley invest in a manager and players that means we might eventually do a ‘Leeds’ or might have the hope of winning something?

    2)  In the days of the Leazes End, why would any choose to stand in the Gallowgate in the freezing rain and wind?  (We eventually had no choice but to go in the corner!)

  • SGM

    pissed off mag Yeh and thats me in the middle