It is perfectly possible that Steve McClaren will eventually manage to secure the services of a top class coach. It is equally possible that he won’t.

McClaren himself is, or was, a very good coach and will know a good coach from a poor one. It’s said there is an up and coming coach at Swansea who might agree to come. Fans can have confidence that McClaren, unlike John Carver, will make good decisions as a manager.

(To feature like Wiz, send in your articles for our website to [email protected])

The difficulty is not that football people think McClaren doesn’t know what he’s doing. The difficulty now is that McClaren is being buried by chickens coming home to roost. Our club is a basket case.

Outsiders look at all these chickens in a basket and have politely decided to have nothing to do with us.

Steve Round, who worked at Newcastle under Sam Allardyce and Kevin Keegan (although this doesn’t appear on his Wikipedia entry) and will have noticed the peevishly incompetent modus operandi of Mike Ashley, has turned us down. So have Phil Neville and Bolo Zenden.

And of course there are all those failed advances for strikers costing roughly five million pounds more than we are prepared to pay for them.

A bold declaration is made through Newcastle patsy media outlets, and then shortly afterwards the Chronicle piles in with all the insuperable problems that lie in the way of the Toon getting their man.

This is drowned out by new trumpeting about some cheaper geezer we have never heard of being on the club’s radar, shortly to be followed by news of a smaller but more ambitious club snapping him up.

None of this is surprising to those of us who have observed Ashley closely for the last eight years. It was all bound to happen. As I have constantly pointed out, Mike Ashley believes the world must conform to his concept of it. And if it doesn’t, or won’t, he will stamp his foot until it does.

For a while the football world looked on and assumed Ashley would see the error of his ways. Eventually he would see the club would fail if he kept on behaving in such a bizarrely wilful and self- defeating fashion. But no. Ashley was, and still is, waiting for the football world to get in step with him.

He has set the club up perfectly, from his point of view.

It will carry out his wishes even though he has no day to day contact with it. The club is run by a yes man who is gamely implementing the owner’s programme even though it is clearly destined to failure. He will have been confused by Ashley’s declaration on the last day of last season that it was now time to bolt the horse onto the cart.

There is no horse, and nor could there ever be one at Newcastle, as he well knows.

And amidst the smoke and mirrors generated by friendly media partners, the football world is gradually coming to see that there is no cart either.

What there is, the world is coming to realise, is somebody clinging to his job and wailing at people who are walking away from him and the whole stinking mess, pleading with them to turn round and help him come up with a cart.

The problem is that football people know what the truth of what Ashley said he too knew – the most important thing is to get a horse. But there has never been a horse. What there is now, as I say, is a load of chickens.

The chickens in charge, to extend the suitably ludicrous metaphor, are headless, because they’re being deserted by season ticket holders, and by other football clubs, and by footballers, and now by football coaches.

The irony is that there is money to spend. Ashley is still stamping his foot, but he has realised he will have to change a little. But it is all far too little, and far, far too late. The damage has been done. That’s what he doesn’t realise.

People sense the club is doomed. Good people are turning away.

There is no chance of a watchable, successful team next season.

Relegation already seems likely. By the time this disaster has played itself out even those fans who somehow still remain will have had enough.

I wonder, frankly, how long McClaren will put up with being humiliated by being seen with the awful people he now works for.



  • Chemical Dave

    Sorry Wiz, don’t agree that he’s waiting for football to “get in step” with him, I very much doubt he gives a monkeys about the football side of it…

  • Toon Terrier

    Got to agree about the club reaping what it has sown. I don’t think anyone in the hierarchy knows or understands how the way they have run the club is regarded in the wider world. McClaren is now in Pardew mode; ‘Fans will have to show patience in the transfer window Its exciting but it will take three windows to get the players we want’ Is he serious?
    Does he not realise the state the club is in and prepared to go along with it or is he In for a rude awakening?
    Either way it’s business of usual for NUFC. I can’t see the club making the massive investment needed and another battle at the bottom of the league looms.

  • TelBoyTelboy

    It seems to me changes are not going to happen as we all thought and Ashley’s words were empty promises.

    Also when you have McClaren plus Bob Moncur on the board of directors is it a tactic used to keep them sweet and to the line.

  • Michael Maximus Moose

    Best thing Mclaren can do is Resign, He`ll get nowhere with the shower of Shtye running Nufc

  • Toon Terrier

    Captain Bob was already sweet and spouting the Ashley line before he was on the board.

  • DavidDrape

    as usual Wiz – lots of respect for what you write and comment on. i may be slightly younger but you certainly have a handle on most if not all nufc things and more importantly i got to agree with you

  • DavidDrape

    TelBoyTelboy a few seasons ago ashley ashes certain people what he was doing wrong. it was suggested he bring in local people (i.e ex players etc) who also support newcastle or who have the respect of the fans. ts obvious he done that re Beardsley, Moncur, geordie coaches etc this approach has become more obvious. this advice given to ashley which he obviously appears to have taken on board was initially i think to make the club better in many ways but in a round about way it kind of protects ashley from less criticism… well thats my theory anyway.

  • JohnyH

    Ashley has poisoned this club and the City.
    Everyone in English and European football can see this. We are now witnessing players and coaches of ability and/or potential staying well clear of the poison.

  • Conman

    Great article 

    only the yes men, sheep and hopeful fans remain 

    I recon McClaren will be off before Christmas and that’s being generous 

    we cant attract anyone and therefore need to be prepare for relegation on the budget that the fcb has for us 

    as I said, great article. keep up the good work.

  • NottsToon

    Conman McClaren walked out on Forest as it was not as pictured in the brochure….I see a similar scenario transpiring here.

  • MilitantGeordie

    The trouble is nobody likes Mike Ashley. The people being exploited in his sweat shops abroad hate him. The people on zero hours at his tatty shop under the three strikes rule hate his guts. Anyone who does business with him know he’s a ruthless bully always looking to ‘ smash them to bits’. The Newcastle fans ( mostly) utterly despise him me included. Even certain sections of the media have turned on his sportswear empire and his recent interview in my opinion was a man in a panic. Even his own parents don’t like him!
    He can see the tide is turned against him with negative publicity everywhere he looks and apparently mass numbers of fans have finally woke up and are refusing to buy the season tickets despite begging letters and multiple extended deadlines. So we can go around the doors again and again but the conclusion we will always come to is this… The problem is Mike Ashley.

  • Andgeo

    The bottom line is this: “where as all the fcuking money gone”? This question needs be asked by everyone, supporters and media at every opportunity until it is answered. The fact that a club in the top 20 worldwide in terms of revenue, can not compete in terms of wages and transfer fees is a complete disgrace. Ultimately ashley will blame lack of season ticket sales for inactivity in the transfer market and as a result the supporters will again take the blame and ridicule from opposing clubs supporters. Ashley will aim for premier league survival, and with McClaren and a few more championship players, this will be achieved. Another wasted season, and another £50m TV money straight into the fat bsatards pocket, plus another years free advertising for his tat shop. We have to get rid of the tyrant, and the only way is messy, public and will harm the club in the short term. Ashley out!
    Don’t let him off the hook again!

  • stepaylor

    you would think that the obvious logic of bringing in a couple of top players early in the window was obvious. Ashley goes on Tv to buy some time and if by now a couple of players Ayew, Richards and Austin were already signed up the whole place would be completely different because the fans would have sensed change, momentum etc. Instead we have nothing, nothing from Charnley (who i have grown to hate). On the verge right now i am, seriously thinking about becoming a Hartlepool fan.

  • magpiefifer

    This is what it’s come to – courtesy of one Michael Ashley – NUFC is now the club that players/coaches will avoid coming to if they value their careers!
    We only seem to appoint managers/coaches who are unemployed/unemployable elsewhere,and it now looks as though that scenario extends to players and coaching staff.
    How I hate what that man has done to my beloved club.
    Ashley out!

  • stepaylor

    Ok thats it. I have had enough.

    I feel used, taken for granted, unimportant. Feel like a badly treated wife and im no victim let me tell you. We need to get together and act. i have said it many times and feel stronger than ever. 

    The only way we will ever trust or feel connected to the club again is if it is fan owned like Barca, Real Madrid etc.

    Would love a football club branded ‘The Geordie Football club’ I own the domain http://www.geordiefc.com 

    A club owned by Geordies created to represent their passion. I would put money into this as would many of us im sure. Even if we started from the bottom, who cares it would still be better than what we have become here. Im going to put a basic website together to firstly capture an email list of fans that want to be involved. Im going to push for Alan Shearer to get behind us. We are the Geordies, Geordie FC

    http://www.geordiefc.com watch this space

  • GToon

    What I find amazing is the total lack of urgency in building up the squad. Where exactly do they expect to sign players from? Other clubs are doing their business now. If they leave it too late they will be priced out of any deal they try and do. Do they just not know how this business works? Amazing, stupid, I just don’t know how to describe the attitude of this club. They ought to try this: mirror mirror on the wall, who will have played 4 games and have f all. At the moment I can’t see us winning a game. I really can’t. The season hasn’t kicked off yet and we are miles behind. You know if somebody gave me a thousand quid to bet on us winning a game, any game, I just wouldn’t know which one to choose from. There isn’t a team in that league that won’t have a really good chance of beating us. So start now fatty and co, before it’s too late.

  • GToon

    Yep, it’s basic stuff isn’t it. A couple of decent players in and everybody’s on the up. They just don’t get it do they. Take Austin for example. If the price they want is 15m but we value him as 10m then view the difference in terms of money for premier placings as that’s what it will cost us not to have a goal scorer in this season. Or view it in terms of the cost of relegation. We should have gone down really shouldn’t we. I mean fatty is acting like we have. Get rid of players, coaches and a few management people and make one appointment. Still money must be tight for him.

  • TeamGB

    Managers and coaches, back room staff as we say, operate in a tight professional network, they know each other, it’s relational. McLaren has landed a new job and naturally will look to put in place a professional back room team, the fact he is yet to appoint anyone could be due to existing contractural matters for the relevent individual or we consider the obvious to be more prevailant ,…..we are unambitious and generally considered as bad employers, our reputation precedes us, we are a soap opera of self inflicted drama, with that, who would blame them for having 2nd thoughts?

  • Phildene

    GToon Couldn’t agree more! your good comment is exactly what we’ve been saying

  • Phildene

    MilitantGeordie the problem is he’s still bloody breathing! I’d heard years ago when he first came here that no one will do business with him as he’s horrible to do business with and I can see how. The man’s a cretinous leech and it’s about time the fans woke up and smelt the coffee!

  • stepaylor

    first draft done

    http://www.geordiefc.net

    will have it linked to the .com within a day or so. You seen it start right here today. Like the facebook page and lets see where we can take this

  • stepaylor

    first draft done

    http://www.geordiefc.net

    will have it linked to the .com within a day or so. You seen it start right here today. Like the facebook page and lets see where we can take this

  • stepaylor
  • foggy

    Why would any decent coach / player want to be associated with a club who treats its loyal employees with such horrible lack of respect ( eg Jonas). Why would any decent coach / player want to be associated with a legal loan shark company ?
    Why would any decent coach / player want to work for lickspitals such as Charnley ?
    Is it any wonder why no one wants to work at nufc?

  • DownUnderMag

    stepaylor that’s the trouble, right now fans have no reason to believe the end of season statement was anything other than a rallying call to win that last game to protect his investment, all just smoke and mirrors once again with little change in the offing.
    One player signed up would have shown intention, would have given hope that the words spoken on the last day of the season were not as hollow as we all feel they are now. The window may not be open, so there’s plenty of time, I suspect the greedy burke is just biding his time not wanting to pay out extra wages while the players aren’t playing.

  • mickalfas

    Well that cheered mu up !!

  • DavidDrape

    stepaylor agree. everyone must share & pass to friends – lets get this off the ground and away. very slowly and well organised. it will grow and grow

  • prestondave

    stepaylor just joined.

  • ilullissat

    I never thought I would see Oliver Hardy and Harry Hill in the same photo,theres a surprise.At least THEY were meant to be comedians.