The first public open meeting hosted by The Magpie Group was held on Wednesday night.

Hundreds of fans meeting up in Newcastle City centre to hear from the fans involved in setting up the group, exactly what the aims are, and maybe most importantly, what the wider fanbase can do to help.

Those behind the #IfRafaGoesWeGo initiative are part of The Magpie Group and they have summed up the key points to come out of the meeting.

Remember, this is just the start of the campaign, Mike Ashley is clearly not going to give up control of the club easily.

There is no one dramatic thing or magic answer that those involved with The Magpie Group, or anybody else, can come up with.

Ashley is now in his 12th year of holding Newcastle United back and ensuring it has no chance of fulfilling its potential whilst he is in charge.

No doubt some tough times ahead but we have to see the back of him.

IfRafaGoesWeGo overview of last night’s Magpie Group meeting:

As the meeting draws to a close the Chair summarises what happens next.

Focus on Sports Direct and Ashley’s other business interests. Disruptive action.

Maintain pressure online and social media. Positive use of facts to change narrative and disruptive action.

Need more people involved. Everybody needs to spread the word.

Need to impact on Sports Direct AGM

Action at the Arsenal match. We WILL be protesting outside Sports Direct (‘Newcastle United club shop’) at SJP. We need to do this.

The Magpie Group will listen to everyone and take ALL views on board.

Get in touch on email, on social media and in person.

If we unite we will get Ashley out of OUR club.

Newcastle. United. Will never be defeated.

The Mag – Wednesday 5 September 2018:

Wednesday night sees an open meeting organised by The Magpie Group, a collection of fans who have come together under this one banner.

It is a public meeting open to all (incl Under 18s) and is taking place at Newcastle Labour Club (11 Leazes Park Road, NE1 4PF) just along and down from the Gallowgate End.

Protests are ongoing against Mike Ashley and tonight is billed as an opportunity to ‘Discuss the current ownership of Newcastle United‘, with the meeting kicking off at 7pm.

The Chronicle report that Greg Tomlinson from The Magpie Group will outline the group’s aims and how they hope to achieve them.

With then Kevin Miles (Football Supporters Federation Chief Executive) the guest speaker.

An open discussion will follow, with fans able to ask questions and put forward ideas on how to take the campaign forward.

In advance of the meeting, Newcastle fans are invited to suggest questions and discussion points by using the #TMGRafa hashtag on Twitter.

  • steve

    In other words they have no idea how to affect change and no viable alternative to sggest.

    • Carverlier football

      Let’s crack on with your plan then, eh?

      • ICKOI

        He never claimed that he had a plan.

        • Megatron1505

          Just happy to criticise everyone else’s 🙄

          • ICKOI

            And that’s perfectly fine as long as the criticism is valid.

          • killymag

            good article and interesting points made . Now i am just waiting for the fuc#wits to come on here and spoil it

          • ICKOI

            You’ve lost me.

          • panther

            so how many log ins is this now?

          • ICKOI

            Three. However this is the only “working” log in.

        • Carverlier football

          I know. That’s my point.

          • ICKOI

            You don’t have a point. Your question/comment was irrelevant to his comment and he didn’t provide an answer to your irrelevant question/comment.

          • Carverlier football

            Ok, I’ll spell out my point shall I? He’s criticising people who are actually making an effort trying to do something for the betterment of the club, while bringing nothing to the table himself. The Magpie Group should be encouraged, and they’re welcoming suggestions by the way, not dismissed just like Ashley and any number of pundits and trolls would love to happen. And he didn’t provide an answer because it was a) a rhetorical question and b) he doesn’t have a plan as per the above. Clear enough for you?

  • SuperDesHamilton

    Also an empty stadium would look great on tv beamed worldwide

    • Lostprofit DBC

      The way he currently has Sky tv and the pundits in his pocket, we would first have to win the media war. Otherwise they will just point to deluded, demanding fans who want the unattainable. They would also point to the money already being paid in advance. Maybe worth a try though under the right circumstances.

      • SuperDesHamilton

        Even as a visual spectacle a think it would send a message, the average joe sitting a home will hopefully think ‘finally the geordies have seen sense’

        • Lostprofit DBC

          Very true and whist I see your point, I feel that reasonable fans already see our dilemma. If we could just get media acceptance (Shearer is a lone voice at present), we could get the same message over millions of times. There are those of course who just hate us and are loving it.

          • SuperDesHamilton

            Aye you can see the glint in souness eye everytime he talks about us. For a club who isn’t big or relevant a lot of people can’t stop talking about us

    • Kneebotherm8


  • Ashley-out

    you need the fans to empty St James but they are to spineless to do it,
    they are complicit in the degradation of Newcastle Utd

  • TheFatController

    Ever watched the film Braveheart? The bit where Wallace is asking the Scottish nobles if they want to free Scotland from the English?

    And the Scottish Nobles like it the way it is even though it’s not great, because they get a nice bit of land and taxes. Allowing the English to stay in control of Scotland?

    That’s what will happen here. Ashley will be here for ten more years because although it’s not great, matchdays are a nice pint and a day out for everyone. Like the English back then, Ashley knows how to divide and conquer. Give a bare minimum. Take the rest.

    Wallace asked ‘will you fight?’ Fight, William? We don’t even sing, mate.

    Then we’ll not turn up when we’re secure mid table in the championship and Ashley sells to a used car dealer. So much for not missing your match day pint.

    • Kenny

      He’s been taking the p1$$ for 11 years & the majority do nothing, they deserve each other

      • TheFatController

        They just hope for a rich buyer I presume.

        Rich people didn’t get rich paying over the odds for their investments.

        No oil money will come in because it’s actually very rare in football. Thus we need to be sold as a going concern, which clearly we’re not, looking at our spend compared to others.

    • Lostprofit DBC

      But will everyone in the Newcastle area get rid of Sky. In my opinion that would have more impact, ask more questions and get more media attention. That would put pressure on the man.

      • Milburn_Taylor

        I have sky because i love sport, not because Newcastle happen to be on it, if i thought it would do any good i would cancel,
        but it would have little or no impact whereas an empty stadium would

        • Lostprofit DBC

          Why should the actual supporters put themselves out if the armchair viewers aren’t prepared to play their part. See my other post below re. Ineffectiveness without convincing the media that we are justified.

          • Milburn_Taylor

            you just do not get it do you.

          • Lostprofit DBC

            Course I do. I stopped after 45 years home and away but why should he stop the real fans doing what they want to do? There is some merit but be careful and do things in the right order. We have to win over Sky before we do anything and yes a boycott might add weight but might make us look stupid. Maybe Ashley wants this. Read my articles on this (Steve Hickey -Mag – Opinion)?

        • Kneebotherm8

          Totally agree…

  • Lostprofit DBC

    Win the media war, challenge/target Sky tv, publicly challenge Ashley to an open debate and get Shearer involved.

  • Steven05

    Empty stadium on Sky

    Just try it. It’s one match.

    Illness and family circumstances have/might/will cause/caused you to do this

    Miss a match. Out of love for your club.

    Or carry on watching it die

    • Lostprofit DBC

      Seems a popular suggestion but would people then watch it on tv? Sure the pundits will jump on this so be careful. Get rid of Sky, like missing the match it might hurt but….

      • Kneebotherm8

        It’s more pointed by not attending a match……………a half empty stadium sends the message to the worldwide audience…………it’s not something that the Sports Direct brand would like to be associated with.

    • SuperDesHamilton

      Can’t agree more with this. One game, that’s all

  • John D Williams

    Remember when the Liverpool fans walked out after 67 minutes over ticket prices. There were thousands, it created massive publicity and the prices were dropped.
    I remember a situation in Germany over ticket prices Dortmund refused any away tickets, against Schalke(local derby) and every other club in the Bundesliga backed them. Lets take action once, it might work.

    • drc74

      i agree, a mass walk out at the blow of the whistle would have more of an impact

  • JohnnyH

    Lots of ideas which sound good, but I don’t think there’s anything in there that will worry the fat one. Boycotting needs full participation which will never happen.

    Maybe the best chance of success lies in a concerted campaign of asking Tracey Crouch (minister for sport) to have the way the club is ran investigated?

    Also pressure on the PL asking if they have any idea if Ashley has spent any of the £123 million TV money on the club and it’s infrastructure, as their own guidelines suggest (see the premier league handbook)

    Could the Magpie Group produce sample addressed letters for us all to download,sign and send?

    • Steven05


  • drc74

    to boycott sky just get a jailbroken amazon firestick and register for an iptv address, cost about 70 quid in total,

  • Ron

    Did KPMG attend and offer to lend further support? (Read other excellent article in “The Mag”)

  • Lord

    I agree on the approach to target SD Business interests.

    But they should have suggested a ‘one match strike’. It’s not realistic to expect thousands of season ticket holders not to go any more despite the logic that suggests it would have an effect.

    But pick the next live home match on Sky. Encourage people not to go – for just one match. One match they can watch in the pub. That’s doable but needs co-ordination. Even a half-empty stadium would send out a powerful message.

  • Coble’s Return

    I get that fans do not want to miss games. This is not about boycotting every match to deprive Ashley of revenue, it is purely about sending a message. Even half a match. Empty the stadium at half time during a televised match and issue a statement to Sky / BT / BBC simply stating that enough is enough. Whatever justification is made for Ashley’s financial management of the club (well – you finished tenth, so clearly he got it right), we need to be clear that Ashley’s association with Newcastle United is damaging for the club and the city. He is a pariah as an employer and a liar when it comes to Newcastle United. His use of the stadium as a billboard for SD deprives the club of revenue and commercial deals with the likes of Wonga are an affront to those in our community who have been plunged further into debt by practices which have now seen that company go into administration. There so many reasons to want this man out, but only large scale, public action will have any impact – that and the direct action against SD.

    • toonterrier

      The problem is that if we are winning at half time the fans wont walk out. Do what I have suggested several times and stay outside the ground until ten minutes after kick-off then it will show the fat man we support the team and not the owner.

      • Tweed Mag

        That is a good idea.

  • Nut

    The magpie group are just the same people with the same pathetic anarchist ideals who will use the same tactics they have previously which will end up with the same result nothing!

    The people in it say they want change but when change comes they still will never be happy, what they really want but don’t come out and say is power!

    However any group which would stoops to the depths this one does to get what the it wants is not something I wish to involve myself with.

    These people are the lowest of the low and would happily involve their selves in all manner of unscrupulous activities to further their ends including illegal methods.

    • Danimal

      You lot are getting funnier and more desperate by the day. Do you write Donald Trump’s tweets for him?

      • Nut

        Actually……. no I write my own.

    • Big Hairy Man

      No-one stoops as low as your odious master Ashley.

      • Nut

        Oh no I would say you guys have gone way lower, decending down to the depths of the hell gates!

        • Big Hairy Man

          Can you give us a single reason to like Ashley?

    • Billmag

      Why didn’t you go and stand up in the labour club and state the people in this room are the lowest of the low, or was it too far to travel from the North-West. Idiot.

      • Nut

        More than happy to do that in person and tell them they are idiots and have got it wrong, then stand around outside for an hour or two after whilst being kicked around the car park by the very same thugs!

        • SuperDesHamilton

          A don’t think they’ll Wanna scuff there shoes fatty

    • Superdooperhooper

      What illegal methods are you talking about? Cos I must have missed that bit

      • Nut

        I think direct threats of physical violence by some directed at those deemed to be in support of the owner are technically illegal threats!

    • panther

      ok Mike

      • Nut

        Come get me then!

        • SuperDesHamilton

          You couldn’t put the cat out you fat pudding

    • SuperDesHamilton

      That bottom part of the diarrhoea you’ve wrote best describes your idol Ashley

      • Nut

        It pretty much describes all of you to a tea!

        • SuperDesHamilton


          Don’t cry you little girl. A bet your the type of bloke that uses a tea bag twice

  • 1957

    Our season tickets were cancelled for a myriad of reasons with Ashley’s overall running of the club top of the list.

    The only thing I’m sure of is Ashley won’t be forced out, he won’t budge until someone pays him what he wants. I doubt boycotting every SD store around the north east would be anything but a minor irritant to him, I can’t see season ticket holders are going to stay away or walk out in any great numbers, there’s nothing the government could do and honestly Sky really don’t care.

    I well remember the SOS campaign asking all fans to stand during a game in protest against what Hall, Shepherd and Fletcher were doing, not even all of those affected did…

    • Billmag

      So does everyone just give up and do nothing, you’ve put a few reasons forward as to why it won’t bother fatty, I disagree with you because you can hurt him remember Lambiarse’s remarks “you don’t know how nasty we can be” he hates his tatty brand besmerched that’s a start.

      • phildene

        You’re quite right Bill, it does hurt him. He hadn’t got such a thick skin as people think, especially when it comes to his baby SD!
        Good luck to The Magpies Group and all they do. Keep at his sporting empire will hurt him alright. SD has lost money on stock market and the shareholders are up in arms as losing their money. They wants answers but he’s decided not to attend giving a very feeble excuse-not good at all!

      • 1957

        It’s my opinion based on the fact SD is a multi national entity not a local firm. He has around 500 stores I believe with probably 10 of those within 20 miles of NE1 (excluding the dark place or Teeside). Roughly speaking therefore 98% of his customers probably couldn’t care less about NUFC and a localised boycott by everyone in our area, which is as likely as season ticket holders not attending games, would make little difference to his profit margins. Protesting outside of shops hasn’t so far had much national coverage so I doubt he is worried by that either.

        If I could see anything effective that would see him on his way i would gladly join in, but for now not having a season ticket and never having shopped at SD is it for me.

    • Tweed Mag

      You cannot underestimate the role of social media in all this. It did not exist when the protests against past regimes took place. The SD brand will eventually become toxic if the pressure continues and Ashley’s PR machine has no answer. It will take a long time and people should steer clear of personal abuse as it is counter-productive. The Magpie Group are doing a good job and if you ever want to go back to St James’ then you should support them.

    • SuperDesHamilton

      The only good thing is all this negative press is upsetting the board members at sports direct

  • halibekinc

    y︅е︅st︅е︅r︅d︅а︅y f︅︅о︅und m︅y c︅r︅а︅zy о︅ld f︅о︅ld︅е︅r w︅︅it︅h m︅︅y p︅i︅︅quа︅n︅t p︅i︅c︅s – t︅h︅а︅ts t︅h︅е f︅u︅l︅l а︅r︅︅hi︅v︅е ̩
    A︅d︅d m︅︅e: s︅t︅e︅l︅em︅a︅.︅c︅o︅︅m︅/︅i︅d︅0︅︅1︅︅7︅4︅1︅︅4

  • kanarozi71

    O︀o︀a︀u︀h︀h︀ Du︀u︀u︀d︀e︀s︀s︀ ! T︀︀he L︀︀i︀st w︀i︀t︀h N︀a︀k︀e︀d︀-︀W︀o︀m︀e︀n︀s f︀r︀o︀m y︀︀ou︀r C︀i︀t︀y ︀︀wa︀s︀ p︀u︀b︀li︀s︀h︀e︀d
    H︀︀e︀re︀e︀ o︀n : s︀t︀el︀e︀m︀a︀.︀c︀o︀m︀/︀g︀a︀l︀l︀e︀︀r︀︀y︀1︀2︀4︀4︀︀0︀7 💋

  • Wezza

    Mention of Labour Club and the Tory trolls turn up. How about that.

    Troll list:

    Clarko, Fleckman, Monkseatonmagpies, ghostrider, ComeAndTakeIt1836, Mark Potter, Vodkamagpie, funlovingexpress, Nut, Jonathan Gibson, Martin Rooney, mentalman, Ben Jones, Rob Brown, 501ninedarter, Your mum, Mike Adam.

    • Jezza

      Two Manchester glory seeker brothers behind all those ID’s.

      • SuperDesHamilton

        How can they be glory seekers if they support Man united and are from Manchester?

        • Benji

          Jezza and Wezza are and always have been dum3 f#cks. Simple.

          • SuperDesHamilton

            A bit like ya ma