Newcastle United have often been a target for Martin Samuel, Chief Sports Writer at The Mail.

Particularly the Newcastle fans, as this journalist is so desperate for attention and a reaction.

Recently, he claimed that there were plenty of ‘real fans’ who supported what Mike Ashley has done at Newcastle United.

Predictably that got plenty of reaction and earlier today he has had another go after being challenged as to which other club would get such good support in the Championship.

Newcastle hold the all time record in the second tier of English football, averaging home crowds of 56,283 in 1947/48.

Last season the average was over fifty one thousand, quite amazing after everything Mike Ashley has done in the decade he had been in charge, two relegations in the first eight Premier League seasons amongst them.

Reacting to the challenge, Martin Samuel has backed up the credibility and fan support of Chelsea, Manchester United, Man City and West Ham, the club he supports.

He talks about plenty of clubs being able to get 52,000 if they were top in the Championship…funny how we never see anybody getting anything close to that, or indeed filling far smaller stadium.

Talking about size of crowds can be a little childish but Martin Samuel did start it…and the reality is that it is a bit mental what happened last season at St James Park.

A club that hasn’t won a domestic trophy in over 60 years and where the club’s current owner has ground the supporters into the dirt, yet the fans responded in such astonishing numbers just because they got a little bit of encouragement with a manager worthy of the name at last.

Newcastle’s crowds were built on a base of 40,000 season ticket holders before a ball was kicked, not because they were cruising at the top of the league.

After losing the first match of the season at Fulham, Newcastle faced Huddersfield in their first home match and had over 52,000 there. Funnily enough, when Samuel’s own club, West Ham were last promoted in 2011/12, their first home crowd of the season was 25,680, less than half of Newcastle’s opening crowd last season.

As for Manchester City, when they were last promoted (to the Premier League) they regularly got crowds of 30,000, some five thousand under capacity.

As for Manchester United, just how many fans would be travelling from Torquay and Tokyo if they hadn’t won any domestic trophy for 60+ years?

Obviously all three of those clubs HAVE got good support but to claim that Newcastle’s attendances weren’t something beyond any rational explanation, is simply not being honest.

Analysing those Newcastle crowds in the Championship, of the 14 home matches played on a weekend, 13 of them saw crowds of 51,000 or more, with eight of them 52,000+.

Remarkably, the only weekend home match to get less than 50,000 was when fellow promoted club Brighton visited, the Seagulls bringing one of the lowest away followings of the season didn’t help.

Of the nine midweek home matches, three had 52,000+, another two were 50,000+ and the other four were in the high forty thousands.

Jay94 – Leicester:

“Martin Samuel just does not get it. Newcastle fans are real fans.

“Name me any current Premier League team who would sell out 52,000 against Ipswich at home in the Championship. You would struggle.

“Newcastle fans stick with their team through thick and thin despite having nothing to shout about over the last 20 years.

Manchester City cannot fill their stadium. Chelsea fans call for the sacking of a manager who won them the title.

“Manchester United fans are tourists or 1990s born glory supporters. West Ham fans are petulant and violent.

“I will be waiting for you to name some teams with fans that match those of Newcastle who live purely for football.”

Martin Samuel:

“Here that whooshing noise, Jay? That was the point flying over your head, at 100 miles per hour.

“All fans who go are real supporters of their team, and just as special as yours.

“Newcastle were top of the Championship getting 52,000 against Ipswich.

“I think a few teams would do that now, fill the house if top of the league, certainly many of those you mentioned.

“Manchester United, for instance, who have always had high attendances.

“Manchester City got excellent crowds, even in the third tier, and the Etihad looks full whenever I go there.

Chelsea fans are completely behind Antonio Conte by the way, and not all West Ham supporters are petulant and violent.

“But if you want to believe you are special, you probably are.

“The rest of us will stay as we are.”

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  • Toon

    Who cares? Some NUFC fans are more bothered about comparing attendances and talking about empty seats then they do the football, it’s pathetic, get a grip

    • NUFCLX

      Speaking of empty seats, did Arsenal play at the Stadium of Shyte tonight.

      • stevetoontoon

        According to sky 58, 400 whey aye….. it was the stadium of shyte

    • Geordiegiants

      It’s all we hav going for us man.

  • MichaelMaximusMoose


  • Paul Patterson

    Put simply- a Muppet.

  • Andy Mac

    “Manchester City got excellent crowds, even in the third tier, and the Etihad looks full whenever I go there”

    Obviously dont go there regularly then Fat Samuels ?

    • Geordiegiants

      It’s always littered with empty pockets all over.

    • Mark Davies

      Isnt its nickname the emptyhad? Honstly Samuels is a joke and Arsenals “fans” pityfull show proved a point last night. Hillarious that the commentator was trying to justify the empty seats by blaming the weather! Either way, fair waether fans in one sense or another!

  • Leazes.

    It’ll take the mismanagement of an elite group club on a cataclysmic scale to find out…. and it isn’t going to happen anytime soon!

    Ashleys championship record will last, not as a medal of honour but as a shame that he could do that to a club with so much going for it.

    • Mrkgw

      Well said.

    • Jonas

      Only took Roy Hodgson and half a season in midtable to see Liverpools gates drop to just over 40k.

      • Leazes.

        If we drop again….the penny will also drop, I can’t see Rafa staying and the promise of a Rafalution (and it is only a promise) disappearing down the plughole.

  • Antenociticus

    Nothing but clickbait.

  • Mrkgw

    Another out of touch journalist. Needs a reality check.

  • Gallowgate Dave

    It’s difficult to take a man seriously that looks like he still lives with his Mam and she still dresses him. Ditch the tank tops and cardies Martin, lose at least 8 clem, buy a razor and gan to the barbers. You’re a clip, no wonder you’re so bitter wor kid.

    • Albert Stubbins

      ha ha- love it. nailed him!!

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    Obviously now with West Ham, City having bigger stadiums there would be more of a chance of them attracting those numbers in theory.
    Would those two mentioned clubs retain that level of support with a drop out of The Premiership ?, I honestly don’t know.

    • Jonas

      Given how unenthusiastic Man Citys fans are (cant get off their seats for goals, much less create an atmosphere) its fair to say the majority of the new fans would not trundle off to see Burton at home

  • Jonas

    The only other club anybody would bet their lives on doing this is Man United.

    the opinions he has on us and Ashley are so wrong you wonder if he’s wrong about all the other clubs and everything else.

    • Albert Stubbins

      I think you can add liverpool to that but no one else certainly.

  • Monkseaton Magpies

    See Spurs got twenty four thousand for the cup tie against Rochdale half our crowd against Luton where there were nearly fifty thousand. What he did get right is that not all fans are anti Ashley.

  • Wor Lass

    Arsenal had half a stadium there against City last night and they started b*ggering off at half time in the cup final on Sunday. I don`t think they`d be challenging our record any time soon. I don`t think any other club so badly mismanaged over a 10 year period would keep 50,000+ coming through the turnstiles in the second tier. And that`s with quite a few people deciding not to go to home games.

  • TheFatController

    You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but he looks like an idiot, talks and writes like an idiot, and works for the Daiy Mail.

    What’s not to like ?

  • Desree

    Martin Samuel aka Ghost Rider

  • Peter

    Typical of the Daily Mail;… it talks rubbish on a=everything else, so why not on the size of our crowds?

  • Big Al 1967

    Here’s some stats for the fat lad at the Mail
    Wolves Top of the Championship Capacity 31,700 Average attendance 27,999… 88% full
    Cardiff 2nd Capacity 33,280 Average attendance 19,045 57% full
    Villa 3rd Capacity 42,785 Average attendance 31,368 73% full
    So they are REAALLY packing their grounds out aren’t they? Standard London based journo who opens his big fat gob about a subject yet doesn’t let anything like the true facts or basic research get in the way of his agenda

  • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

    The fans that go to the match are real fans regardless of how many there are, we just have more than most.

    I think if Arsenal, Liverpool, Man U, Tottenham were relegated they would get similarly near capacity crowds if the prices were similar to NUFC’s.

    It’s hard to judge Man Cit and Chelsea, they used to get a similar crown to us in the pre-premier league era (Chelsea a little less).