The season closed for Newcastle United on Sunday 13 May.

So what does everybody think about the past, present, and future for NUFC?

We have asked some of our regular/irregular writers to give us some feedback on a number of questions about the club, as yet another vital close season confronts us.

First up is contributor GToon:

Three words that describe your current mood regarding Newcastle United?

Expecting the worst.

What efforts should be made to keep last season’s loan players and what percentage likelihood do you think there is of Newcastle signing each of them this summer?

Martin Dubravka:

Definitely try and keep him and 100% expect it to happen once Sels has moved.

Islam Slimani:

I’m unsure about him as he was injured a lot but if we could get him for £6-7m then maybe, about 25% chance of getting him back.

Kenedy:

Great player, would love to see him stay but perhaps he did too well, so I think we will try for him but I give us 105 chance of him coming back.

Seven players (in order) that Newcastle definitely need to keep for next season?

Laschelles

Shelvey

Lejeune

Richie

Dubravka

Diame

Perez

The 2016/17 Newcastle United Accounts have belatedly been made public, the club claimed a ‘£90m loss’ whilst various football finance experts agreed it was actually a ‘real loss’ of under £20m. Discuss.

May I refer my learned friends to my first comment. All Ashley has done is set up the fans, manager and players for the seasonal disaster that is the transfer window

Or summer sale as Ashley would put it…

It’s almost as if him and Charnley are bragging about how badly they are running our club. So you can now imagine Ashley mulling over his two choices – either back Rafa and invest in the squad to make sure we don’t get relegated again, or sell a few players to get some money back and hope we don’t get relegated again.

I wonder which one he will choose! All of this is of course forgetting the TV money which apparently only other clubs are allowed to spend on players.

Does Mike Ashley really want Rafa Benitez to stay?

No. He couldn’t care less. If a stuffed doll resembling Marilyn Manson, wearing a Sunderland shirt, stockings and suspenders could keep us in the premier league, he’d employ him if he was cheaper than Rafa (as long as didn’t ask to sign anybody).

Joking aside, no he doesn’t care. He has one question. Will the manager keep us in the premier league. If the answer is yes, then keep him regardless of everything else. If the answer is no, then get a new manager (usually when it’s too late).

What do you think would be the minimum needed to convince Rafa to at least stay for the final year of his contract?

The minimum will be the promise that the money from players sales, that will no doubt happen, can be reinvested.

What do you think would be the minimum needed to convince Rafa to extend his contract this summer?

£50m without having to sell players.

Best pieces of skill from Newcastle players last season, what is your top three (in order)?

  1. Lascelles save off the line v Swansea away.
  2. Shelvey shot v Man City at home straight from kick off.
  3. Dubravka save v Barkley v Chelsea at home.

Shelvey had a shot from near the half way line too, that hit the bar I think, but I can’t remember who it was against.

Where do you think Newcastle would have ended up in the Premier League if:

Hadn’t signed Dubravka and Kenedy in January? 3rd from bottom

Had signed Dubravka but not Kenedy? 4th bottom

Had signed Kenedy but not Dubravka? 5th from bottom

As well as a decent transfer budget, Rafa Benitez has made clear that Newcastle have to also show ambition when it comes to the new training complex that was promised years ago, as well as investment in a fit for purpose Academy. How integral do you think these things are for both Rafa and the future f the club?

It’s vital if we want to convince decent players to join us at an early age for their football education. Having a decent ground is fine but we need to convince players they can improve with us. That work happens on the training pitch, in the gym, the canteen etc etc.

How relaxed are you at the minute in terms of everything turning out OK this summer?

I’m not relaxed at all, I’m more resigned to what will happen. Once bitten, twice shy. Eleven times bitten, very shy!

What do you make of everything that has happened at Sunderland and how do you think they will get on next season?

I think on the one hand it’s hilarious as I wish nothing but misery for their team and fans, but on the other hand, I realise the importance a successful football team can play in the north east so I’m sort of laughing but thinking it’s a shame at the same time. I think they will come back up (to the Championship next season (unfortunately)!

Of the current squad…

Definitely need to keep for next season:

Lascelles, Lejeune, Clark, Shelvey, Diame, Murphy, Perez, Richie and Dubravka.

Don’t mind if they stay but if decent offer comes in then sell:

Mitro, Gayle, Mbemba.

Need to be moved on:

Joselu, Manquillo, Aarons, Sels.

If Newcastle stuck with exact same squad of 2017/18 (not including the loan players), what would happen in 2018/19?

I think we would get relegated. Rafa would walk and our best players would leave but we’d probably make a profit, which is all a certain person is interested in, so it’s certainly not out of the question.

I would also add to this question and answer, that the one position I would certainly like to see strengthened is a goal scorer.

If we could get a decent forward who can hit the target we could really move forward. Not having such a player has cost us this year.

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  • Fireman Sam

    Apparently Fat Mike has held talks with “board members” in London. Talking to himself was he?

    • Guest 2

      We don’t have a Board any longer – and when we did he removed himself from it!

  • mentalman

    When was the last summer transfer window that we sold players who werent good enough or didn’t want to be here

  • Clarko

    ‘I’m unsure about him as he was injured a lot but if we could get him for £6-7m then maybe, about 25% chance of getting him back.’

    ‘Great player, would love to see him stay but perhaps he did too well, so I think we will try for him but I give us 105 chance of him coming back.’

    ‘Laschelles’

    ‘Richie’

    ‘Richie’ (again)

    ‘Does Mike Ashley really want Rafa Benitez to stay? No. He couldn’t care less.’

    It’s embarrassing, what an absolute clown.

    • Ram Kishore

      That was bit disrespectful

      • Clarko

        But true? Right?

      • GToon

        Hahahaha. I love it when he starts having a go. I just laugh. He’s rock hard behind his keyboard. I won’t reply to him as it’s nearly 8pm, which is “milk and a biscuit time” and then it’s his bed time. I dunno about being disrespectful, maybe predictable would be more appropriate. To be honest Ram I hope I’m totally wrong on most counts as that would make for a great summer. Lets see eh!

        • Monkseaton Magpies

          How will that team get relegated as it will only get better having had a year’s experience in the Premier league.
          Of course Ashley wants Rafa to stay or he would not be paying him £6m a year so wrong there. Far to much negative stuff on this site just glad it’s different at the actual match.

          • GToon

            Before Ashley arrived I thought we could win something, a cup, even the league. Unfortunately Ashley and his shop keeper approach to running our club has removed that, hence the negativity. At the game I shout and support the team but unfortunately I’m never far off when it comes to predicting our clubs future. Lets hope I’m wrong this time.

          • Monkseaton Magpies

            The season before Ashley arrived we nearly went down only five points of relegation and on paper in serious financial trouble. He has put in £279m that is £278m more than any one else and all he gets is non stop abuse. I wish some one would put ten million in but not a chance.

          • TheFatController

            I see stoke, Swansea and west brom’s Premier league experience served them well this season

          • Monkseaton Magpies

            They kept changing the managers. Burnley who signed very few players did well on the back of experience. Anyway tenth top and people on this site will be hurting all Summer and I will drink to that.

    • Geordiegiants

      Go on Clarko!!!

      • GToon

        He’s funny isn’t he. I think the editor is sending out this q and a to a few people. I bet Clarko can hardly wait. My kids think it’s really funny when he starts insulting me and other people.

        • Geordiegiants

          He’s a pure tit.

          • GToon

            He’s a laugh tho. I genuinely look for his comments as I know they will be funny and insulting in equal measure. The only time he ever backed down with me was when I called him Harry Potter and told him it was time for bed! My kids were in bits laughing. The argument must have gone on for nearly two hours before he was tucked up in bed! On a serious note tho it wouldn’t be much fun if we all agreed with each other.

          • Geordiegiants

            Very true, and I agree he is very entertaining.

  • JonMag

    The transfer window at Newcastle United. same schitt, different year

  • Son of Wilt

    3 words? ‘Stuck’ ‘with’ ‘Ashley’.

    • porciestreet

      Not selling club.

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    “LOAD OF RUBBISH.”

    • Leicester Mag

      Renamed St James’

    • Leicester Mag

      Lied to Keegan

      • Leicester Mag

        Relegated us twice

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    F OFF ASHLEY !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    GEORDIE JOHN CARVER !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    JOKE IN HERE !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    EMPLOYED DENNIS WISE !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    GAVE XISCO WAGES !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    SIGNED IGNACIO GONZALES !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    EIGHT YEAR CONTRACT !

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    STEVE TUFTY McCLAREN !

  • jack

    This coming season will be the same as every season under the Ashley regime , the Pr machine has been in full swing since last season ended , the every penny statement , the distorted accounts , the next to no progress in New contract for Rafa , the non movement in transfer window , it all smacks of things we’ve heard before .There’s one thing about Rafa , he’s loyal and will see out his remaining year come what may .So there’s no excuse to have not having any talks over possible signings especially with Kennedy and Dubravka .And even if they’d done an agreement with them both we would be .in the same position as we were at seasons end , at a standstill .It’s all delaying tactics until deadline day approaches and then more excuses will come , we couldn’t get them over the line etc , same old same old .I’d suggest Kennedy and Dubravka should be done asap , but know they won’t be and either one or both will end up somewhere else , wether Rafa signs a new contract or not is immaterial because we still need to strengthen for coming season , that’s after we possibly sign Kennedy and Dubravka .it’ll be probably a case of sell before we buy and another season of struggle again , Rafa going at end, and worse off than we’ve ever been

  • nevfur

    To ask what would happen if we stuck with the same squad minus the loan players is a bit pointless even taking into account the influence of Ashley and Charnley. With two leaving at end of contract and losing the loan players from a declared squad of 24 instead of the normal at limit total of 25 we would be 6 players short.
    Of course we could fill those places with Sels, Mitro, Arrons, Lazaar, Saivet and Colback lol

  • Geordiegiants

    The three words are, AFUCKINGJOKE

  • kingfisher

    It’s not only about what Ashley does (or doesn’t do),it’s the time he takes to make decisions and the constant rumours.Will he sell,? Will Rafa stay,?blah,blah,blah.It’s the same every time something needs to be sorted,rumour and counter rumour.Any owner who cared about his club would have had a contract ready for Rafa to sign as soon as prem safety was assured.
    Obviously there must be massive differences between what Rafa wants to take the club forward and what Ashley is prepared to give.
    Why was all this not sorted (at least in principle) when our prem place was assured?
    Of course Rafa may be making unrealistic demands,and yes he may want a long highly paid contract for himself,but let’s not forget he wants to take Newcastle United Football Club to the next level.Seeing Ashley stalling and messing about makes me believe that our owner does not give a toss about our club and the fans.
    It’s the same old, same old, year after year, after year, after year etc etc and if anyone thinks he will change now, then methinks you are in for a rude awakening.If anyone has the ability and mindset to grab defeat from the jaws of victory it’s our owner.👎👎👎

    • nufcslf

      So very, very true. Not sure how anybody can seriously go to matches anymore when there is simply f**k all to take seriously and get passionate about. Awful in every way.

      • kingfisher

        Spot on nufcslf.Whenever I post a comment saying I can’t understand why these people keep on going and therefore condoning the Ashley regime, I get replies ranging from : “I support the team, not the regime” to : “It’s a free country and I can go to S.J.P if I want to”.
        Of course people have a choice, but they cannot see the damage their blind devotion is causing.Supporting your team through the hard times as well as the good times is what being a supporter is all about,however as you rightly say, how these people can continue to support Ashley despite everything he has done and represents, beggars belief, and as long as he enjoys their unquestioning support,he has no need to do any more than the bare minimum to keep the £££££££”‘s rolling in to his ever increasing wallet !

  • Geordieguy

    Three words ? Groundhog day again. Or how about nothing ever happens ? It should be the club’s anthem

  • Wezza147

    Lies, Greed, Spite.

  • nufcslf

    Lying Fat C**t…….