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Opinion

These latest tables prove just how desperate Newcastle United are for new owners

5 months ago
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Newcastle United need new owners.

I think we all can agree on that.

Obviously the politics and issues that aren’t anything to do with football, have deflected the debate a lot of the time away from that, due to the identity of the likely new imminent owners.

However, leave aside for a moment where the money is set to come from to rid us of Mike Ashley.

I want you to look at why Newcastle United are so desperate to have new people owning the club and in charge.

Here are two tables that perfectly illustrate why…

The 2019/20 Under 18s league table (North):

The 2019/20 Under 23s league table – Second division:

As you can see, a dismal picture.

It isn’t just the first team where Mike Ashley refuses to allow proper investment and/or a strategic long-term plan, it is right throughout the club, on and off the pitch.

The past week saw confirmation that the Under 18s and Under 23s leagues/fixtures had been brought to a premature end.

As you see above, in the Under 18s only Sunderland (zero points!) and Championship Blackburn are below Newcastle. Championship clubs Derby, Stoke, Middlesbrough and West Brom all better than NUFC. The thing is, this is not a one-off, season after season Newcastle struggle at Under 18s level due to lack of investment and care.

Those who work at that level do their best but unless properly funded in terms of facilities, coaching and all round strategy and overall investment, things will never improve to any significant degree.

With 12 clubs in the Under 18s South, that makes 24 clubs in total at that level and Newcastle had more points than only four of them this season.

As for the Under 23s, yet again Newcastle United played in the second division of the reserve set up this season.

Championship clubs like Derby and Blackburn are in the first division, whilst Stoke and Middlesbrough are above Newcastle in the second tier table.

Over the two divisions there are 24 clubs and Newcastle ended up 18th of 24.

As with the Under 18s, the Under 23s suffer from a lack of investment in coaching and facilities, as well as overall, a club totally ran without ambition.

In these entire 13 years of Mike Ashley I can only think of Paul Dummett, Sean Longstaff and Matty Longstaff who have properly come through the younger age groups with any great success. Not saying that they weren’t helped by the coaches at NUFC as obviously they have been BUT when two of the three are brothers, you have to think that the key thing for at least two thirds of the three success stories was genes, not due to a brilliantly run and supported / financed youth set-up!

No surprise to see Manchester City 12 points clear at the top of the Under 18s league and if / when the Newcastle United takeover goes through, investment in the future of the club will be all but guaranteed, especially in terms of investment in youth development which is outside of FFP rules.

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