We are all having a good laugh at Sunderland as they drop off cliff after cliff, seemingly destined for League One and who knows after that.

As for Leeds United, there is now a whole generation of Newcastle fans who see them as regular Championship also-rans, rather than relevant to us, apart from when Mike Ashley gives us one of our rests from the Premier League.

Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest, Derby County…all in pretty much that same Leeds boat.

Well, much as it pains me to say it in one way, I have to admit that we desperately need the likes of Leeds and Sunderland back in the Premier League.

I’m not saying that clubs such as Bournemouth and Swansea don’t deserve to be in the top tier, they are obviously there on merit.

However, that doesn’t stop me wanting them to get relegated ASAP.

Think for a minute about the great days you have had at St James Park…

Was it that day we beat Stoke?

Or was it getting the better of Watford.

How about Crystal Palace, does that stick in your memory and on to tell the grandkids?

Bottom line is that in reality, we want to have games that matter.

Clubs that Newcastle United have history with, where they fill the away end and sing all game, sparking a reaction from our supporters and everybody comes out of ground with the blood pumping and adrenaline still kicking in.

Compare say Leeds at home last season in the Championship and the likes of Bournemouth and Swansea this season.

Forget about the results on any of those particular days, what about the atmospheres?

Yes it is horrible if Newcastle get beat off Sunderland but to properly enjoy the highs, you have to have also experienced the lows.

Yes your stomach churns in the days leading up to a derby match and at times you dread the game BUT the alternative of turning up and playing opposition after opposition, where they are totally anonymous and only the results stick in the memory, rather than the match experience, is not why we love going to watch Newcastle.

I think we have a Premier League where I would happily ditch half the clubs and welcome back instead those currently in the lower divisions.

Put it this way, if you are one of those who share a season ticket with a friend or family member, imagine if last August your half of the games this season were Watford, Burnley, Brighton, Stoke, Southampton, Swansea, Stoke, Palace and Huddersfield (West Brom and Leicester just about sneak in).

I would happily never play any of those nine ever again, they mean nothing to me.

On the other hand, to make it games that matter, I would instead have Sunderland, Leeds, Sheff Wed, Villa, Middlesbrough, Forest, QPR, Wolves and Derby County (other contenders for me would be Sheff Utd, Ipswich, Portsmouth, Blackpool (great away trip!). Clubs where they have elements of a good history of honours, rivalry with Newcastle fans, decent size fanbase and so on.

I know a lot depends on your age, in terms of which clubs you see as Newcastle’s big rivals, so who would be your choice to be in the Premier League?

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  • Jamie Lumley

    .. Sounds like you’re missing a bit of a roll around? That kind of passion and energy has gone from the game, or gone from the premiere league anyway, the powers that be don’t want any excitement from the crowd, they just want us to sit still, cheer occasionally and pour money into their pockets through online gambling. When the fun stops, STOP. When was it last fun to watch football? 1996 by my reckoning …..

  • Paul Patterson

    Couldn’t give a stuff about the opposition as long as were winning.

  • ghostrider

    The arrogance is absolutely astounding.
    A sense of a mindset of a person who believes one city stands high and proud way above most others, let alone a football club.

    I love Newcastle United as much as the next fan/supporter and it’s easy to get dragged into the melee of playing the game of school day player picks by the two supposed best players who take turns in choosing their best team and leave all the weakest kids till last, whilst both trying to get the best.

    A massive stench of some kind of entitlement that is based on some kind of fantasy.
    Can you imagine a team like Bournemouth who’s fans come out with similar and don’t mention Newcastle in their premier league teams?

    Nostalgia is one thing but a sense of entitlement where there is none, is another.
    Let’s not get above our station.

    • TheFatController

      There was no sense of entitlement in the article, just missing teams the writer feels we have rivalry with.

      Stunning that you are seeing what you want to see and not what was written…merit, entitlement were all taken out of the article yet you bring them back in….?

      • Albert Stubbins

        He’ s got to be a mackem!!

      • ghostrider

        Or is it you that sees what he wants to see?

    • Albert Stubbins

      Our station is a top 8 in premier league in terms of support, trophy’s won and tradition. Why shouldn’t we rejoice in that, plenty of other clubs do!!

      • ghostrider

        Our station is nothing of the sort.
        Our station is where we are at any time in any seasons end, whether we are deemed deserving of it or not.
        Man City were once in the old third division. Were they playing below their station and should not have been there or were they there because they didn’t perform on a regular basis?

        History is nothing more than memories and words. It is not a reality, it was once a reality of a present at any particular time for particular people of that time.
        We cannot live in it and living on the words of it does not give anyone any rights on what the present should gain or lose from it.

        The stations of all clubs are exactly where they are right now. Next week is another time and is a future time that hasn’t happened, just as last week is history. We live in the present as in, in each second and where we are in every way shape and form with the presence of everything around us and that’s where we are.

        • Steven05

          True. The present is instantly the past, the past is gone, and the future is only a prediction

        • Albert Stubbins

          In terms of football heritage and where we should be aiming for it is pre Keely that. Keegan thought so, Robson thought so and so do I. I know who’s company i’d rather be in.

          • ghostrider

            Where we should be aiming for?
            Should and could and if and but is all well and good but it still produces nothing in reality and won’t until it actually does become a present reality.

          • Albert Stubbins

            Yes that’s Stephen Hawkins logic. I on the other hand am a dreamer as are most football fans. It’s one of the things that allows the game to be fun. Ashley stopped us all dreaming and took the fun out of the game. I still choose to dream as the reality is unless you’ve got a billionaire owner prepared to splash the cash then you’ll be able to compete at the top table if not then your one of the also fans. If I accept this then I would no longer enjoy the game so I choose to dream instead. It’s much more fun.

          • ghostrider

            There’s absolutely nothing wrong with dreaming. I do it myself. I always try to see a brighter side to everything.
            If all our dreams came true then it still has to happen in the present, just as your dream has to be in the present.

            By all means have hope for what the future brings. I do myself, as do most others.
            I also predict things based on what I see and have seen. It doesn’t mean I’ll be right or that anyone will be, whether those predictions are positive or negative.

            We can all argue all kinds of points and we can all be smug enough or simply confident enough that our take is the correct one….but hindsight and foresight is not insight until the past is verified by you in that once present and the future never exists at all. It’s that which is the prediction that can only come to fruition or not…as a present and the past.

  • Grahame Johnson

    Leeds at home last season reminded me how much hate certain games bring, Brentford,Ipswich, Rotherham, Derby and Sheffield Wednesday, more enjoyable experiences with great away support

    • Rich Lawson

      I’ve supported the club for over 50yrs and been to a lot of away grounds but nobody comes close to Leeds fans for shear nastiness and aggression toward the away support.Come to that I’ve even seen some of them verbally abusing their own disabled support at Elland Rd.Don’t miss them at all.

      • Leicester Mag

        Remember playing dodge the seat /coin/ brick at coach etc in 82/83. I get nostalgic about most things, not that!

      • Albert Stubbins

        They’ve had torrid times up here and also down there in early 80’s as well from Newcastle fans. It’s been by far a one way street.

      • Whickhamrobbie

        True Rich and add Boro to that list .
        An England game to be played at Elland road WTF the most loathsome angry fans on the planet .

  • Monkseaton Magpies

    The point is for what ever reason teams in the North are doing badly teams in the South are replacing them. Yes we have the Manchester and Liverpool clubs but apart from them it is falling apart. Boro, Leeds both Sheffield’s , Derby and now Sunderland seem to have taken a break from the Premiership. Well done to Ashley for making a go of things unlike the other clubs up here and in Yorkshire.

    • Chuck D

      Making a go of things…..

      Explain that please, I thought we’d been relegated twice, never progressed past the 4th round of the FA cup, and been fighting to stay in the PL for the remainder bar one lucky season!

      Give it up man

      • Monkseaton Magpies

        We are making a go of it look at Sunderland, Leeds, Boro, Coventry, Blackburn teams which were regulars in the Premier league. I have supported Newcastle when we had seven seasons in Division one how I wish the Ashley bashers had been made to suffer those days.

        • John

          Well said. Newcastle go down and reinvest £60m to go back up. Sunderland go down and net £40m profit, spending £1.25m on players and people try to compare our owner to theirs..

    • Graham Chapman

      Where did you draw your north/south divide? Scotch Corner? The Prem then should clearly be made up of the Toon, Sunlun, Gateshead, Carlisle, Darlo, Boro, Pool, Thirsk, Dunston…My point being that, like it or not, the richest clubs in football fall into the “north” bracket. There isn’t a geographical divide, but there is a financial and leadership one

      • Monkseaton Magpies

        There is only one team in the North East in the Premiership, only one for now in the hole of Yorkshire.. The likes of Bournemouth, Brighton the six London clubs plus Southampton and Swansea then a good proportion of the Premier league is south of Watford. Our Derby game this season was Burnley if that is not a North South divide tell me who our derby should be against Spurs.

  • MadMag83

    I do think the Premier League is missing some of the more traditional ‘big clubs’. However they’re in the lower divisions for a reason. The only gripe I have with the likes of Bournemouth etc, is they don’t seem to be pushing on so we’ve ended up with a two tier league. And I include ourselves in that before anyone thinks I’m being snobbish.

  • Mark Davies

    With increasing travel prices and the ever increasing rearrangement of fixtures to suit Sky, BT and whoever else in future without a care for the fans, perhaps a northern and southern league is an idea with the winners of each plyaing for the big brize at the end of the season.

    Still get away games elsewhere in the cups. I dont mind travelling anywhere but I did love last season playing a lot of big clubs closer to home.

  • Steve Smith

    Bring back blue passports!

  • Wor Monga

    Nah!…nobody felt that way when we went down, did they?…If the mackems lose at home against Preston this weekend (fingers crossed) they’re as good as down again, and if it had of been us in that predicament then they’d be laughing their c*cks off at us…
    … but we got a proper top football coach/manager in charge of us whereas they only got a coal man!!!

  • Leicester Mag

    Most of the teams mentioned are where they are due to owners showing the same business acumen as a chimps tea party. You largely get what you deserve.

  • Jonas

    Wrong.and that’s not an opinion.

    neither we nor the PL needs those club exchanges, it is literally proven by right now.
    best times I’ve had as an NUFC fan under KK and Robson the mackems were either down the bottom or not in the PL at all – the betterment of NUFC was/is more than enough without having to compare it to the mackems.
    its a very mackem mentality, something you’d be advised to hide if your unfortunate enough to have

    • TheFatController

      i have a feeling you’re never knowingly wrong?

      Never have been, never will be?

      • Jonas

        Being myself living proof never mind all the other proof and zero real evidence to the contrary emboldened me here.

  • Coble’s Return

    What the EPL is missing is the huge blocks of safe seating that come the closest to replicating the terraces of old. Would love to see a B&W version of the Dortmund Yellow Wall on the Gallowgate. The EPL has no interest in driving this forward though.

    The only attraction of other Northern clubs is the fact that you don’t have to travel for half a day to get there.

    • Andy Mac

      Safe standing is surely something we have to embrace asap ? Remember those days when you could rock up to the ground and get in with your mates and all hang around with one another first for the banter then the game and pints afterwards.

      Maybe it would help get the singing going again as well ?

  • Jonas

    Also depends what age you are – nobody under 18 has been alive for Leeds in the top division and nobody under 25 will remember it.
    there’s very little to chose in terms of support traditionally between most of the clubs you’d demote and promote. Sheff Wed got gates similar to those clubs a lot more often than they ever filled their ground when they were in the PL, and – nobody under thirty-five will think of Forest as a big club.

    • Albert Stubbins

      Unless they are historians of the game of course and plenty are although I take your point in general.

  • Tommy Adds

    Interesting that 3 teams on your hit list Burnley, Stoke and West Brom were founder members of the football league in 1888. I think they might have a valid argument over history and tradition. The league never lies. You are where you are on merit.

    • TheFatController

      In fairness to the author, the article was about rivalry and match day build up/atmosphere, he alluded to merit, and heritage and tradition would include Notts County, another less than celebrated fixture for us…

      It’s not an article about the league lying or not, it’s about teams you look forward to thumping or hate getting thumped by.

    • Albert Stubbins

      Or how much you’ve got in the bank although I accept Burnley are the exception to the rule on this one and have been immense this season.

  • Kneebotherm8

    I’d have all those clubs back………except Sunlun and Villa……

  • Martin Gardner

    Cant stand sunderland hope they rot in hell.

    • paul mclaughlan

      Brief and to the point. 😂

    • John

      Mackem must’ve shagged your missus?

      • Martin Gardner

        No i just hate the fuckas. I remember the Bobby Robson dead songs, that nonce doing the aeroplane to our end, the plane ova SJP, banners on the tyne bridge

  • Jezza

    While I’d like to see all those teams back in the Premiership, the likes of Watford, Burnley, Brighton, Stoke, Southampton, Swansea and Bournemouth are all there on merit. Not only that but I find these (no disrespect) smaller clubs make the top division infinitly more interesting. The presence of these unglamorous unfashionable teams also p!sses off Sky Sports so that is an added bonus.

    • RicardoW

      It just means Sky feel entitled to ignore them and we get Man U and Liverpool every week

      • Jezza

        I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before we see the Sky Sports Elite League which will involve Liverpool, Manchester, Man City, Arsenal, Chelsea and Spurs playing each other 8 times a season with every single match televised live. Not that I’ll be watching, I’ve never had a Sky subscription and never will have.

    • Albert Stubbins

      A sentiment that is demonstrated by Jim white on talk sport constantly eulogysing about the championship because of all the so called big clubs in the league. Mind to be fair the championship has been exciting this year it has to be said. Wolves are traditionally a genuinely big club so will be a big bonus next season to the premiership. Great support especially away.

  • Albert Stubbins

    If the makems go down it will be at least another ten years minimum before we see them again in the premiership. Sad for our younger fans but personally speaking I’ll not miss them after all there’s still plenty of opportunities to give them stick when I see the sad b****** in Spain every year!!

  • John

    If Sunderland go down, the German consortium who wanted them last summer will buy them, Coleman will stay and they’ll go back up. It will cost pennies to get out of league one and give any potential buyer a year to pay off some debts, evaluate the club etc. I think they can spend next season aswell, their FFP will be available after being useless for years.

    • Andy Mac

      For Chris Coleman read Pardwho or Mark Hughes or Tony Pulis. Without Gareth Bale he’d be out of football by now and pontificating on some obscure Middle East TV channel.

  • Leazes.

    The heartlands of football are the traditional Industrial Cities, not Walmington on Sea, or someplace where the local transport is a bathtub on wheels, but industry has now gone and we have centres of population and especially centers of wealth which are taking football away…. I’m not keen as most of those places are down south!

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    I would think about having a Northern League and a Southern League so more of these big clubs would be involved every season.
    Both leagues would have so many teams advance into a combined league which would play each other down to a grand final at the end of the season.

    I know some will be horrified with the notion but the way we do things has become stale and predictable.
    It is coming to something when the majority of the excitement generated during a season comes from the relegation battle !

  • Dave Watkins

    What an appalling way to think! It comes across as some kind of spoof article by someone who prefers a prawn sandwich over the actual game of football.

    If this fan wants to play Championship [ and below ] teams so much, there is an easy way to do so, if Newcastle can just get relegated. “to make it games that matter” – that has to be a joke?? He would rather play sides who are not that good at football, above teams that are at Premier League level? Remembering that many of the sides he has listed have been at that level for way longer than Newcastle!

    The suggestion would pretty much be the end of football. Teams play at the level they deserve, simple as that.