Ahead of this weekend, Mark Lawrenson has been talking about Newcastle United.

NUFC face Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup and Lawrenson says they will want to avoid the ‘ignominy (Definition is ‘Public shame or disgrace’) of losing’ to a Championship side.

The idea of Newcastle United avoiding ‘Public Shame of Disgrace’ under Mike Ashley is a ship that sailed an awful long time ago.

In 11 FA Cup ‘campaigns’ under this owner, Newcastle United have never got past the fourth round.

That record littered with exits to lower league clubs, including a 3-1 defeat at League Two Stevenage under Alan Pardew in 2011 and a 3-0 loss to League One Oxford United under Rafa Benitez in 2017.

Losing to a Championship club a ‘Public Shame’ under Mike Ashley?

I don’t think so sadly, it would be just seen as par for the course. More than maybe any other season the NUFC owner has made it impossible for Rafa Benitez to even contemplate any kind of an FA Cup run, with the manager being forced to make a £20m+ profit on transfers in summer 2018, following on from not a single player bought in January 2018 and minimal net investment in summer 2017.

Rafa Benitez won’t be throwing any matches but it is for certain that if he could push a button and the FA Cup would disappear this season, he would do it without hesitation.

Only two points above relegation and with Chelsea away next, Rafa simply can’t risk anything against Blackburn.

With injuries, Muto and Ki off to the Asian Cup and the fourth round of the FA Cup played the weekend after a relegation six pointer against Cardiff and before a week that features games against both Man City and Spurs, the Newcastle boss will sadly be hoping for some kind of escape route this weekend.

The odds are laughable, Blackburn are safely mid-table in the Championship and are sure to throw a lot at this game, so for a much changed Newcastle team to be 13/20 odds on (see below), only the very rich or unhinged would be taking those odds.

Blackburn of course carried a lot of luck and beat Newcastle home and away in the Championship season, scoring with their one shot on target in both matches.

The sad reality is that the team Rafa will be able or willing to put out tomorrow, will be nowhere near as good as the team he put out when NUFC were in the second tier.

Mark Lawrenson predicts an entertaining goal filled match tomorrow, with Newcastle coming out with a 3-2 win and at least temporarily, avoiding the ‘ignominy’ – here’s hoping so for those who turn up at the game.

When it comes to ‘Public Shame and Disgrace’, the one saving grace is at least Mike Ashley hasn’t pulled another shameful publicity stunt, last season after denying Rafa Benitez proper backing, the owner laughably said there was a £20m bonus for the players if they won the FA Cup. That is trademark Ashley, denying the manager backing meaning he can’t afford to put a team out to try and have a cup run – but for his own selfish reasons pull such a publicity stunt.

What a time to be alive.

Mark Lawrenson talking to BBC Sport:

“Although Newcastle’s focus is on staying up.

“They will want to avoid the ignominy of losing to Blackburn at St James’ Park.

“Prediction is Newcastle 3 Balckburn 2.”

Newcastle v Blackburn Match Betting:

Newcastle win  13/20Draw 3/1Blackburn win 4/1

Newcastle win 2-0 15/2Adam Armstrong to score first goal 9/1Joselu to score only goal in 1-0 win 23/1

All Newcastle v Blackburn betting HERE



  • Paul Patterson

    We’ve been beyond disgraced these last twelve years.
    A club that actively sets itself up to not compete is a disgrace to the term ‘professional football club’.

    • Kneebotherm8

      We are not alone in that respect.

      • Viru leckworth

        … but we are at the forefront.

        • Kneebotherm8

          Are we?……..loads of teams have been doing this for years now…….the common denominator being ,as always,money.
          The financial rewards of being in the premier league or getting promoted into the premier league far,far outweigh the FA cup and have done for many years.
          All clubs,pretty much without exception,have been doing this for years.

  • Mike

    “Prediction is Newcastle 3 Balckburn 2”
    whose playing us?

    • Peaky

      It’s Cheslae in the next round that we worry me Mike….😳😳

      • Kneebotherm8

        Your spelling is worrying me Peaky………..😂

  • Wezza

    The whole Leazes flags debacle AND kids not being allowed to ask for autographs is too much! Hope the Mag does a piece on it. When they do I will point out to Simon that this is what happens when you support your team.
    Disgrace!

    • We’ll support you evermore

      It’s another lie from wezza about youngins not being allowed to ask for autographs. Players are always willing to give an autograph or a high five to make the kids day.

      • Toon Arnie

        So what exactly is the point you’re making – that all is rosy at St James ? I go to matches home and away so can vouch for the mood from both sets of fans. The home crowd is the worst i’ve ever known it in 40 years+ of following the club. Big numbers yes but full of apathy and people who boo protestors (who target Ashley)and then abandon the team en masse with 10 – 15 mins left every game ! Rafa is totally despondent after being lied to repeatedly by our poisonous owner and the Sky money disappears every year. The away fans remain as the one positive, that will never change. I have no tattoos and wear no replica Sports Direct merchandise so can’t comment on either of those with any degree of authority.

        • Billmag

          Even in the bad old days pre-Keegan you always got a few renditions of “sack the board” you don’t even get that now because it’s a different class of support.

      • Toon Arnie

        Autographs are a strange one – I witnessed, on more than one occasion, Bobby Robson push past kids at the ground and refuse to sign autographs ( one of these being away to Metz ) and also witnessed Craig Bellamy go out of his way to give an autograph and a selfie to a disabled kid at a garage many years ago despite being in a rush and widely regarded as a bit of a pr!ck. Don’t always believe everything you read.

        • Billmag

          Remember Andrew Cole not signing autographs at Maiden Castle.

    • We’ll support you evermore

      I go to the match, I see it with me own eyes, you don’t. Your just another sheep who believes everything on social media.

  • Tweed Mag

    There comes a point when you don’t know what to say anymore. Yesterday’s letter, the flags, the apologists, 52,000 in denial, spin, lies, asset stripping. Now Lawrenson advises the club to avoid defeat against Blackburn to avoid ‘ignominy’.
    Too late with that one sunshine, it all happened years ago.

    • Kneebotherm8

      No ignominy in the FA cup nowadays……..nobody plays full strength teams bar the lower division or non league teams…..

      • Tweed Mag

        Yes, it seems a bit devalued now.

        • Kneebotherm8

          Very devalued,it’s not like it was years ago.

  • Kneebotherm8

    Giant killing nowadays is not the same as years ago,when first and second division teams played their strongest teams in the FA cup.
    They’ve all got much bigger priorities nowadays,the FA cup has lost its appeal unfortunately.

  • ScreamStevie

    Frankly our squad is so thin that we could do without the distraction of a cup run. It’s really fortunate that it is cup weekend, because it provides breathing space for Diame and Fernandez get over their knocks and Lejeune to get another week of fitness in. I’d be protecting our best players and letting some of the second string have a run out.

    • Kneebotherm8

      Totally agree.

      • Viru leckworth

        That is what will happen for sure.

    • Kenny

      That`s what the excuse is every year.

  • Viru leckworth

    Non league clubs must rub their hands in gleeful anticipation if they get drawn with NUFC, big pay day and passage to the next round.

  • Carl Marks

    I hope we get hammered – another step towards thousands and thousands of ‘supporters’ being forced to “wake up and smell the coffee/dog sh*t”
    Who said there was only 3 Wise Monkeys??
    “You can fool some of the people some of the time,but not all of the people all of the time”
    OR(in our case)
    “You can fool ninety plus percent of the supporters all of the time –
    the remaining supporters sussed you out,a very,very long time ago”

    “Wakey wakey ninety plus percent”!!

    • We’ll support you evermore

      Hope we get hammered and you call yourself a supporter?! I’ve been going 18 years now consistently home away and never once wanted us to get beat. Band wagon jumpers like you aren’t wanted.

      • Carl Marks

        “Band wagon jumper”??
        I’ve got the club crest on my right arm – so NUFC is quite literally “in my blood”!!
        * that doesn’t need renewing every season and the money it cost me,didn’t go in Ashley’s bank account!!

        • We’ll support you evermore

          What some ink on your arm makes you a diehard. Don’t make me laugh. I’ve got the crest on me back I’ve got a nufc related tat on me arm also. It’s par for the course, big deal. What makes people true supporters are the ones the travel here there everywhere. It’s hardwork. These are the fans who get recognised by the club and get priority. My season ticket money and everyone else’s didn’t go into Ashleys account. Get this out your head. And yes if you want to got to the match a club crest on you isn’t going to get you admission into the match, football is a business it needs income.

          • Toon Arnie

            Yes good point and also like any good business you need to speculate to accumulate or you’ll start to go backwards…. errr hold on a minute…….

  • Carl Marks

    Unfortunately thousands and thousands of our supporters share the same mindset as ‘we’ll support you evermore’
    Consequently,unless,
    a) Ashley dies,
    or
    b) He gets bored with laughing our supporters,
    huges swathes of NUFC supporters will never witness what I,and those of my generation were fortunate enough to experience –
    the awesome sight of a NUFC captain holding a trophy above his head!!
    Suddenly,being 55yo seems wonderful

    • Toon Arnie

      We’ll support you evermore – or at least until the 80 minute mark when the lure of an early bus / extra pint simply can’t be ignored.
      Would the same people leave an Olympic men’s 100m final after 8 seconds ? STAY UNTIL FULL TIME AND SUPPORT THE TEAM FOR FCUCKS SAKE !!! Rant over.

      • Carl Marks

        normally I’d agree with you one zillion percent –
        unfortunately,these aren’t “normal times”
        As long as our fans dance to Ashley’s tune and throw our hard earned cash at him he will never sell up.
        Being a disciple to money,
        the moment he starts to lose money(attendances down,decrease in sales of official merchandise)he’ll sell

  • Carl Marks

    A business????

    A business wouldn’t go out of its way to anger it’s customers,
    A business wouldn’t operate with the shelves empty and no intentions of filling them,
    A business wouldn’t lie to their customers on an industrial scale,
    e.g. “For Sale – due to ……..”
    A business would be keen to ensure their customers got ‘value for money’
    Well,a REPUTABLE business anyway!!

    • We’ll support you evermore

      Businesses do tell lies to customers/contractors they do lead people on sometimes and anger customers/contractors. The squad has seen under investment and it’s crucial that we don’t go down this season for the long term future of the club. Hey at least we aren’t the mackems having pitch invasions over last minute equaliser at Walsall, but things do need to get better at nufc I agree and want a new owner or at least for Ashley to back rafa if he isn’t going to sell, but I’m not into the I want us to get beat craic cause it’ll get rid of Ashley quicker, it won’t.

      • Carl Marks

        I have every reason to believe that you’re as passionate as EVERY Toon supporter and yes,when I see how awesome our fans are on TV it makes me so proud(and I look forward to the day when I’ll be back among you all !!)
        Unfortunately,I’m not going to hand over any of my cash,
        when it obviously isn’t benefitting the NUFC I’ve loved for FIFTY years –
        He’s only staying because of the ££££££££££££
        He has no emotional attachment whatsoever to NUFC and since he plagued our awesome club,our fans have gone from being preoccupied with winning trophies to being preoccupied with relegation battles – like I said in a recent post,I’m lucky enough to remember(due to my age)
        the site of a NUFC captain holding a trophy above his head – under this cancerous parasite,that moment will never ever repeated and I’d love our current generation of supporters to experience that spine tingling experience!!
        Enjoy your evening –
        I’ll be with you all tomorrow
        (in spirit)

        • We’ll support you evermore

          Not sure I agree with the preoccupied about winning trophies bit, but everything else fair enough
          👍