I sat down to write this after scanning through all the different articles about what’s really going on at Newcastle United.

There is so much being written at the moment about how Newcastle is basically not what it was, or what it should be achieving. Being a fan of coming up to 20 years now, I finally wanted to write down my impressions about where the club is now and where it’s heading.

(To feature like Andy, send in your articles for our website to [email protected] – all views those of the author etc etc)

Back in the day I became a Newcastle supporter when the team was at its height of success. The days when we had players like Andy Cole, Faustino Aprilla, Les Ferdinand, David Ginola, Phillipe Albert, Peter Beardsley, and of course the main man Alan Shearer.

The key that drew me to start loving the Toon Army was not just the amazing way in which they played the game on a technical level, but also the way in which you felt their love and respect for the game, and their ambition to win.

To summarise one could simply sum it up as, they had passion as a team. They would get out on the pitch and do all that they could to win!

Let’s flash forward to where we are now.

In a sense those aspects of the game have never changed, but the way in which the clubs are run has. I always feel like comparing Mike Ashley to my father, in that they are both businessmen in the retail sector. And what drives a business man in a way is down to his desire to win, at all costs.

Ironically this is the big problem when you apply this mentality to football. Football is not a finite game that involves X amount of money for X amount of success.

Look at players throughout the years that were great one minute and as soon as they moved clubs they fell apart on the pitch.

Money can buy you talent but it cannot buy you the will to fight your guts out to achieve a 1-0 victory, when everything you try seems to be failing on you.

In the case of Newcastle there is a structure involved.

Mike Ashley sits at the top of the pyramid, with Lee Charnley at his right hand following his wishes, these then seem to be passed on to Graham Carr, and then below that is the manager – whoever that may be, then the players.

So who is the one steering the ship here? Obviously the person that sits at the top of the pyramid, so in that sense it is the mentality of the leader that is sent down to the lowest level.

All the players at the club know the situation that is at hand and they know that Mike Ashley has no desire to compete for anything, other than just staying up in the Premier league.

So why would they have any fighting desire to get out on the pitch and take risky chances that the top teams make week in week out.

We all know that Mike Ashley is the main culprit in this sad lack of respect for one of the great clubs in English football history, but at the end of the day I feel it very hard to support a club full of a vast majority of players that fail to try their hardest to fight to win games.

I have no loyalty for John Carver in any shape or form, but I can see how the same problems that Alan Pardew was facing have just been passed on down to him.

And if you ask me where the real lack of respect is currently at Newcastle, it’s not the lack of respect for John Carver, it’s a vast majority of the players having lost the respect for the fans that turn up week in week out to support them and pay their wages, despite them never doing anything on the pitch to entertain us and earn them.

So Fabricio Coloccini, and whoever else may be listening, let’s see if you can make your actions speak louder than your words come the end of the season.

Newcastle United deserves your respect!



  • Wish this had started with “i started supporting the toon in 1991, when we were in the mire before. I was there and the team loved the shirt. Everyone then loved the club even the bad owners, the sickness that is now does not even come close. No communication, no clue, just sheep that seem to except it, we did have low crowds back then cos it was hard to watch, but them that go now need to stop and have a word. THE EVIL EMPIRE.

  • ilullissat

    In the days of the Entertainers even those who didn’t support Newcastle supported Newcastle.They were that good.So what in fuc.s name happened

  • Jarmin Geordie

    My Uncle took me to my first game in 1957 and believe me I seen some diabolical owners, sh*te players, poor managers and very very bad teams, I’ve stood with 5,000 other poor souls in the p*ssing down rain on a Wednesday night watching us lose to Watford (hope that is a possibility next season as it means we’re still in the Prem) but I can’t remember ever been so depressed as I am at the moment with the state of the club

  • Crawcrooklad

    The writer can’t help what year he started supporting the Toon. A decent article, but (And I’m no financial authority) do the fans really pay the players’ wages any more? Is it not Sky and BT? And that’s a question, not a statement, because I’m not sure any more.
    I started watching them in 1972, they were OK at home but rarely won away, Supermac made it worth my 25p at the boys’entrance (not a reference to catholic priests, it was just cheaper to get in if you were a youngster in those days). Then we had the players’ strike and relegation, and years and years of mediocrity, a few false dawns (like promotion in 1984), then the Keegan years which I’d never even dreamed might happen.
     But from there it went down the pan really – Dalglish selling off our best players and replacing them with his friends and family, a brief revival under Sir Bobby but too many little arseholes making up the squad (least said about the earlier Gullit/Shearer fiasco the better). Then loads of crap players, crap managers (or undermined ones), and a sale to an owner who doesn’t seem to give a toss. Poor coaching team (sorry, I know some journos tell us Carver et al are great coaches, but there are a lot of full internationals in the squad and they’ve been consistently crap for several seasons), seemingly a crap medical team with Derek Wright seemingly unsackable (don’t let him anywhere near you if you have an accident, a minor injury with him in charge will put you off work for a year). And I can’t see an end to it – Tubby will sell when he feels like it, he’s obscenely wealthy and seems the type who reacts badly to criticism. I’m just hoping there are three teams worse than us in terms of points come the end of this month.

  • LeazesEnder

    Crawcrooklad I think we demonise too many ‘managers;for selling off players…. when its the club owners who are doing it!

  • LeazesEnder

    Gregcodling accept

  • snodgrass2

    “What drives a business man is the will to win at all costs” True statement. Which is why I cannot understand Ashley accepting the status quo and treating us like a corner shop turning over a little profit.. He must know that with a little investment we could be like Southampton/Liverpool and pushing the top four. If we got there his income/profit would rise significantly as proven by Arsenal who are happy to be fourth year after year. Even if we fail  his exposure worldwide because we were “in the hat” would favourably affect his income. I know our chances are slim but saying we can’t compete is not new. We and the other 91 clubs  never could compete with the rich London clubs such as Arsenal or Spurs during the entire history of the game. There always was a “them and us money divide” in the league. Always. I even remember when Sunderland were known as The Bank of England Club!!! He may also find that success brings him the same adrenalin rush as we are told he gets from gambling in general. Don’t say its because he hates us. The previous multitude of owners sold out when the pressure got to them because they also needed the money. But then they were merely millionaires or very rich people. If Ashley hated us he would write off the £140m or so as petty cash and go into voluntary liquidation because it would not affect his finances at all, he would still be a multi-billionaire. Why is he playing around with the club?.

  • Crawcrooklad

    LeazesEnder Crawcrooklad I’d agree with that, we rarely find out what parameters are set for the managers

  • DownUnderMag

    snodgrass2 the difference is Ashley hasn’t made his money through pushing his brand image, success or hard work.  He’s made his money firmly on the back of exploitation and a philosophy of giving people what they “need” by offering the cheapest product going and NOT the best QUALITY product going.

    I am quite sure that had his philosophy been different and he was keen to have his company and products associated with success he would have been keen to reinvest the money this club was making itself to push on and increase his public profile in a positive way.  As it stands, he can penny pinch, make a profit and still see a full stadium each week.  Why would he change?

  • DownUnderMag

    LeazesEnder Crawcrooklad Every player has their price.  It’s how you use the money you receive and whether you allow it to weaken the team or you use it positively and move forward and improve things.  For us we always seem to let it weaken the side with the money only spent when absolutely necessary.

  • LeazesEnder

    snodgrass2 to keep it in limbo…. and milk the advertising for his company.

  • DownUnderMag

    ilullissat money happened and as with a lot of sports these days, is being ruined by it.  There is too much money at stake to have a cavalier attitude, to go out and ENTERTAIN no matter the result.  The Keegan side and the title chase that season, the drama, the excitement…THAT was what the current financial stranglehold was built upon…the most exciting league in the world to watch, no matter who you supported you watched the games for pure entertainment…. that feeling no longer applies, to any club.

    It was all attacking flair and balls-to-the-wall stuff, not just from us but from a whole host of clubs.  Now we have almost every club in the top flight playing defensive 4-5-1 formations in an attempt NOT TO LOSE first and foremost, win if they can.

  • Demented_Man

    snodgrass2 Indeed Ashley’s running of the club doesn’t make any sense, if you forget that NUFC is merely a shop window for SD.  Apart from that, he couldn’t care less about the club.
    And I wouldn’t rule out him taking the club down into administration, especially if we are relegated.
    On the article itself, I think it underlines why these sentimental calls for unity and to ‘get behind the lads’ are so misplaced.  Ashley isn’t the only one who couldn’t care less, despite the propaganda coming out of Keith Bishop’s department.

  • SGM

    You missed the point completely. Sky money has meant that the fans money (gate receipts) is no longer the factor that drives a club.