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Opinion

Newcastle fans without football is nothing

2 months ago
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If it was going to happen to anybody, it was surely going to be Newcastle fans.

This weekend supporters allowed back into (some) Premier League stadiums for the first time in nine months.

Then on this relatively historic weekend, Newcastle fans end up not even having a game of football to enjoy / endure on TV.

You really couldn’t make it up.

The impact of the virus rules of Newcastle United playing football (as well as Steve Bruce’s tactics…), whilst on the same weekend the Government has deemed the virus situation is now at a point that allows 2,000 fans to attend Premier League matches in London and the South, plus the odd other token place.

This brings me to the point of my headline: ‘Newcastle fans without football is nothing’…

Not perfect English but I thought a reasonably amusing play on words on the usual ‘football is nothing without fans.’

I admit that football without fans in the stadium is nothing like as good as with them BUT no football at all is just absolutely horrendous.

Over three months with no football at all in May-June this year was a shocker, then you had the three pointless international fortnights in September, October and November with no proper football.

How ironic that this latest pointless and unwanted by pretty much everybody, international break in November, is now claimed to have been the cause of the Villa v Newcastle match ultimately having to be called off. With media reports saying that the club believe one of the NUFC players returning from international duty was almost certainly the starting point for this large outbreak of positive cases.

Even the West Brom match at St James Park could potentially be under threat on Saturday 12 December, unless the virus situation at NUFC is quickly brought under control.

Once again, how ironic is this, the busiest time of the football calendar kicking off and Newcastle fans having no game(s).

At the very least, the next 90 days of the 2020/21 Premier League season after that opening game against West Ham will have seen Newcastle United only play nine more PL matches, up to and including Friday 11 December 2020.

I do have other things in my life but like most of you I guess, football (Newcastle United!) still fills up my thoughts and conversations more than anything else. It is my escape from ‘normal’ life, something to distract from home, family and work…and now the virus added to that list of stresses in my life.

I increasingly find more and more NUFC supporting friends who can’t be bothered to watch all of our matches live, the Brucey style making it such a hard / difficult watch. However, they all still to in some way or other keep on top of what is happening, often for example waiting until the match is over and after getting some idea of how it has gone via social media, will later fast forward or whatever. For example, a few people I know did other stuff on Friday night instead of watching the Palace game live, then after getting some idea of how it had gone, fast forwarded to 87 minutes and just watched from there. Then maybe catching the highlights on MOTD or whatever as well.

Regardless of how much they watch of the games live on TV, these people, without exception, are all keen / desperate to debate / argue about Newcastle United in the days / weeks between matches.

It is a passion you can’t escape from but you do need the matches to feed it on a regular basis.

So here’s hoping this is the last enforced extra break without matches we see this season, though yet another international break I see in March 2021. Hopefully going on runs to the finals of the League Cup and FA Cup to compensate…

I don’t have many of them but I do have the odd friend who isn’t a football fan, what on earth do they do with all their time and head space?

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