The Summer has been a familiar tale for Newcastle fans, spend is low, tempers are high, and confidence for the coming season is almost non-existent.
Here on The Mag we see a daily parade of articles disparaging the owner, mocking the futility of our lack of forays into the transfer market, and the endless comparisons to the business done elsewhere in the league. None of this is new, in fact, after 11 years it begins to feel like we are watching repeats of the same dull drama played out year after year with a slightly different and cheaper cast.
The thought behind this article will probably not be a popular one with most…for the misty eyed football fan who still sees the romance of the game, or for the apologist who stands by the claim that the owner doing what is best for the club, this won’t be an easy pill to swallow.
We seem to have a majority who love Newcastle United, and despite the bitterness and disappointment the current ownership breeds, their love is still strong. We then have a minority who claim to love the club, but steadfastly refuse to see the damage done by the owner, whether these people are trolls or fans of other clubs is open for debate, but both sets of people appear to be missing the obvious.
Your love for the club, your support of the club, your hatred of Mike Ashley, your energies and efforts spent in defence or prosecution of Mike Ashley, are all completely irrelevant, Mike Ashley is Newcastle United and vice versa.
He owns the club lock, stock and barrel, so whatever you feel about or towards Newcastle United is what you feel towards Mike Ashley. You can say until you are blue in the face that the supporters are the club, that we will be here long after he is gone and you would be correct in most cases. However, none of that changes the fact that he owns the club and we do not, therefore whatever action you take in support of or against the club is an action for or against Mike Ashley.
He is not a custodian, as he is so often described, he is not an invading force or a disease, he is not a parasite or a tumour, he is Newcastle United by virtue of the fact that he owns it.
Should the whim take him he could snuff out Newcastle United tomorrow, should he wish to he could turn the stadium into the world’s biggest S***** Direct Mega store, he could also make it a viable footballing enterprise, but we all know that is not on his agenda.
To believe otherwise is to buy into the lie, the same lie that Newcastle United somehow owes Mike Ashley money, that he is generous enough to not expect interest and only denies the club some paltry advertising fees, that he doesn’t limit commercial growth by handling merchandise without revealing exactly what percentage of profit goes where. If you believe that Mike Ashley and the club are separate entities then you admit the possibility of truth of all of the above.
We need to understand that the supposed debt is of his own creation, he owes the money to himself because of the poor decisions of himself and those whom he appointed, there is no debt other than a tax exercise on paper. Therefore there is no generosity regarding interest, there is a simple reduction of cost to make this particular business less costly and more able to perform the function for which it was purchased, to advertise the high street tat shop.
What we as “fans” have left to do is wait for a day when Newcastle United is no longer Mike Ashley, when it is no longer a subsidiary of S***** Direct. Then we can rejoice, then we might have a football club again, but please don’t think for one minute that your action of support does anything other than extend the time it takes for that day to come.