The Summer is always a time where Newcastle United hit the headlines.

It used to be for our record signings and ambition, whereas these days it’s usually for well…..the opposite reasons.

Still, there has been a fair amount to talk about this Summer, a lot to agonise about, and very little shock from fans about just how disorganised, shambolic and downright petty the current regime have been in their (mis)management of the transfer window.

So with so much going on, I thought it might be handy to summarise the last few weeks’ salient points, and to separate fact from Mike Ashley’s version of events….otherwise known as fiction.

So here without further delay is a non-exhaustive list of the crimes against Newcastle United, Summer 2018 edition.

Season Ticket prices rising by up to 20%

Ensuring we are still one of the most expensive outside of the top six clubs in the country.

New kits being ludicrously expensive

Especially when compared to the likes of Liverpool and Man Utd, who actually have a kit made by a quality manufacturer

An unbelievable negative net spend of almost minus £30m at the time of writing

Whilst the vast majority of our major rivals have broken their transfer records and seriously strengthened their squads. The notable exceptions to this being clubs whose squads were already far better than our own.

Lying to the manager and the fans

I know this isn’t a new one, and it is kind of Mike Ashley’s signature move, but seriously……every penny the club generates??? Come on man, what really happens to the money???

Not getting Rafa to sign a new contract

Mainly because Rafa is just as sick as the fans about the two points above this one.

We have a world class manager who (shock, horror) would like to have some funds available on par with our peers in the league in order to perhaps remain competitive at this level, and even (heaven forbid) perhaps improve our fortunes by challenging for Europe or a Cup. Strangely, as Rafa seems to be showing a bit of ambition, Ashley doesn’t seem too keen on hanging onto a manager who actually wants to hold the owner to his word.

The laughably bad letter to the Culture Secretary

I mean come on, spend five minutes on Twitter and you’ll find literally hundreds of people pulling the letter apart using demonstrable facts to completely obliterate every point raised. Did Ashley really think that a politician wouldn’t be able to take his/ Bishop’s weakly crafted argument to pieces in a matter of seconds? It’s just another lazy gesture from a bloke who is clearly not used to things not going his way.

Player bonuses

Yep, this again. Not content with underfunding, undermining and generally sabotaging the club’s chances of competing from a playing point of view, the owner has also decided to take his second pop in consecutive years at the morale of the players we actually have.

The weak arguments of “but players earn so much” would hold a tiny amount of water if it wasn’t par for the course to award a certain level of bonuses at literally every other football club in the Premier League. He’s been the owner for 11 years, he knows how it works, he’s just chosen to wind people up again to try and save a few quid. Only the players withdrawing from media duty, especially the precious Sky Sports and BT Sport, has forced Ashley to back down.

I’m sure that I’ve missed a few…but that’s a pretty strong list of stupidity for now. Whatever happens in the last 24 hours of the transfer window (Lascelles off to Leicester, with Fernandez brought in for £6m?), I hope that those who are now openly opposing the owner and applying the pressure, which is clearly getting under his skin, do continue with their efforts.

For those in Newcastle, join a protest outside the tat store, don’t go to the game, make yourself heard, walk out early…..just do something to let him know that we’re not having it any more. For those of us not in Newcastle this weekend, please keep up the online protests, question where the money is, tag S****s Direct, Fun88 and Keith Bishop Associates in your protest Tweets…it does clearly have an effect as the owner is demonstrating to us in his latest easily disprovable nonsense.

Keep up the good work, and feel free to add any acts of gross stupidity from the summer that I may have missed…..there have been so many.

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  • Hughie_Gallacher

    Ashley really is lucky he is owner of a club that is in a bit of a backwater. Had he owned a more high profile club, in Manchester or London say, he would have been slaughtered by the media long before now instead of being treated with kid gloves.
    It truly is amazing that characters like Richard Keys are still wheeled out to defend him and deflect the blame for NUFC’s woes on to Rafa. Or maybe it isn’t amazing. I’ll eat my hat if SD/Keith Bishop don’t have funds allocated to these PR offensives.

    • Lostprofit DBC

      Very good point, I’ve said it before, the media have something to answer for. So biased against Newcastle. Not imo because of the logistics, more in awe of the fanbase. They think we are unreasonable in our expectations etc.

    • TheFatController

      Agreed, a lot of the media do give him a bad press, but many don’t care about us like we do.

      Playing devil’s advocate for the media, wouldn’t they be justified in saying ‘surely the fans should do everything they can to get rid of him before criticizing others for not helping get rid of him?’

      They sympathise often with the loyalty, but most people outside looking in would find it bizarre that we are always sold out. A non football person would use the logic ‘well, if you keep giving him money he’s not going to leave, is he? Have you tried not giving him money?’

      • panther

        you mean common sense? theres 52000 who dont posess any unfortunately

    • Lord

      Ashley’s self-sabotage this summer is finally clear for all to see. He only needed to cough up a modest net spend of £10-£15m to keep the ambivalent national press onside.

  • Lostprofit DBC

    Such a good analysis? I defy anyone to come on here and stick up for Ashley, even if Benitez isn’t as perfect as everyone makes out.

  • kingfisher

    Excellent post Magatron.But sorry I’m not sure I agree with the bonus scenario.On one hand yes,if all the other teams get bonuses then our players should, but considering that these young men are most probably millionaires (or not far off) do they not realize that going on strike for even more money is a kick in the gonads for every hard working person whos yearly salary doesn’t come close to what they’re paid in a week.
    Furthermore, they should’nt bite the hand that feeds them.To withold their media duties from Sky who pay most of their wages will only alienate the club even more.
    The obscene amounts of money Sky BT etc pay to televise the Prem is not sustainable and sooner or later the whole system will inevitably implode.

    When I worked in construction, whenever anyone asked the boss if they could have a bonus scheme introduced to make sure a particular project got handed over on time his answer was always the same: “When the barmaids are run off their feet on a Sunday morning at the club, they don’t get paid any extra.You men are paid to do a days work for a rate of pay decided by your Union,get on with it” !

    • Milburn_Taylor

      all clubs pay a bonus, it should only be paid if you win a cup or qualify for
      Europe

    • Megatron1505

      Agree with them or not, player bonuses have been an industry standard for years in most leagues. Read “The Secret Footballer” books and they are discussed there 10 years ago at second and third tier clubs.

    • panther

      I kind of agree, but bonuses are part of the going rate, you would think they would be happy earning millions for jogging round a field for two hours then having a kickabout at the end of the week and not have have to worry aboout their horrible job that makes you want to punch everyone you meet, for almost enough to cover the rent

    • Desree

      Fair dos, but you have never had Mike ashley as a boss.

      I imagine the bonus scenario was the straw to break the camels back.

    • Paul Patterson

      If I knew that a job was available to me and that the pay was better, bonus’ were being paid and the manager was supported from his superiors etc, I’d look to move to that job. It’s a simple equation.
      In our terms, lets say a person was on £8.00 an hour and he saw a job advertised where he could get £10.00 an hour and was going to be incentivised for making the company prosper to say an extra 10% at the end of the year was forthcoming, I’m sure he’d apply for the job.

    • Sickandtired

      The club pays them. Sky feeds the owner. It’s Sky who need to be asking why they are throwing millions at a club whose owner refuses to make the football team competitive.
      Every football club pays bonuses, including those outside the PL. The only bonuses paid at SD are to full time employees, who make up less than 10% of the workforce.
      That’s Ashley for you.

      • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

        Not true, My niece and nephew both worked for SD whilst students. Both got bonuses etc. All of the retail staff are incentivised, I believe most of the warehouse guys are too.

    • WrongToon

      Aye, but if we are to believe the reports, Ashley refused to match even last year’s bonus for the forthcoming season. Seeing as the bonus is essentially part of the going rate these days, would you accept a lower rate after a year where you just, by all accounts, massively overachieved?

      “Hi guys. Great job on 10th last season; an incredible achievement. The Club has benefited greatly from the additional TV revenue for League placement, and in the number of televised games. In addition, we’ve made considerable profit from player outgoings. As thanks to everyone, I’ve decided to increase season ticket prices for supporters and offer you all lower bonus payments this year. I’m also cancelling all of your birthdays, as well as Christmas. Any of you have pets? Not any more, I’ve had them all put down. Well done again. I literally have to have a second helicopter just to carry my wallet. Great stuff.” – Mike Ashley

      • kingfisher

        Excellent 👏👍😂

      • kingfisher

        Very good 👏🤣👍

      • Desree

        Nailed it. Corporate thinking applied to high performance sports is disastrous.

        As owner of NUFC Ashley should be investigated by the Monopolies Board.

        He is treating customers with utter contempt

  • Leazes.

    Every penny generated

    • Sickandtired

      Yup. Seems that’s what Rafa is getting. Pennies, not Pounds!

    • Jezza

      …..has gone straight into the fat pig’s pocket.

  • John D Williams

    There has been so much s*** written about and spoken about Newcastle and its supporters over the years by outsiders who know nothing ( southern media the worst). In all the years i have supported us ( 55) i have never once heard a supporter say we are going to win the league, or deserve to win the league, even when we were top in the Keegan, Robson years. There is always apart of you that says it won’t happen, and it didn’t. All we ask for is a chance to compete in the league, hopefully do well in the cup, and see some good football. No more or less than any supporter of every other team. With the present owner we have been denied that. No one should defend this man he has no interest in us or our club. He is only interested in himself.

  • Billmag

    Good post Mega now why o why if you can put a piece like that together why can’t the local dummy journos and the National press not do the same, it wouldn’t take much investigated journalism to blow holes in his ownership of NUFC.

    • Ron

      There’s more holes than in a string vest

  • Wezza

    Really liked that Megatron, kudos.