Newcastle fans are having a tough summer so far.
No new faces signed up, with only Martin Dubravka converted from loan to permanent, plus then Mike Ashley has put up all season ticket prices in every part of St James Park.
Over the course of Ashley’s 11 years running of the club, he has been unique in many ways.
One of the stand out examples is that surely he is the only Premier League owner who constantly pushes out the PR message that the club is nothing special, that Newcastle fans are deluded if they think it has the potential to compete in the top six any time in the future.
Whereas pretty much every other Premier League owner is looking up at the stars, dreaming of what could happen if everything falls right, Mike Ashley’s only plan/intention is to try and keep NUFC in the Premier League whilst spending a minimum amount of money necessary (from club funds).
He only wants to ensure Premier League level revenues come in and the worldwide free coverage given to Sports Direct and his other associated brands continues.
He has no ambition in terms of what happens on the pitch above that AND wants to try and make sure the Newcastle fans don’t believe anything else is possible.
However, supporters need to take heart and believe that if everything was done right, then Newcastle could once again compete.
Tottenham have gradually built the club into one that can compete, whilst of course the example of Leicester City will always be there as well, though very difficult to replicate that!
However, Newcastle United do still stand out as a club that could rise again, if ran with ambition and everybody pulling together.
If you still don’t believe that, I only need to call one person to give evidence to back this up.
Only two months after leaving Real Madrid, why on earth would Rafa Benitez come to Newcastle United if he didn’t think the club was capable of far far better?
He has regularly said that there is massive potential for Newcastle to climb the league once again.
In October last year when a takeover was thought possible, the manager spoke.
Rafa Benitez – October 2017:
“When I signed here, it was because I could see the potential.
“It’s one of the top sides in England if you put everything together.
“The question is, is it reaching its level? Obviously, no. Can we do it? I think so.
“I think we can do better, you can see the potential is there, it is just to do the right things.
“Obviously, you want to win trophies and want to compete.”
Rafa Benitez – March 2016 (When agreeing to become Newcastle’s manager):
“I have the pleasure to confirm I have committed to a legendary English club.
Lee Charnley – March 2016 (When Rafa arrived):
“In Rafa we have, without doubt, secured the services of one of Europe’s top managers.
“He has managed some of the most successful teams at the very highest level of the game and we are proud to now have him as our manager.
“Our sole focus now is to give our full support to Rafa, his coaching team and the players.”
After winning La Liga twice with Valencia, Rafa’s clubs have been Liverpool, Inter Milan, Chelsea, Napoli and Real Madrid.
He chose Newcastle United because it still does have that potential to succeed and Newcastle fans should never forget that, despite whatever Mike Ashley’s PR minions put out.