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Opinion

The Newcastle United Managers we have trusted under Mike Ashley and the ones we haven’t…

5 months ago
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With Sunday being Valentine’s Day it meant I was always going to have one thing on my mind, yes that’s right, Newcastle United Managers!

It is Kevin Keegan’s 70th birthday today and I make it he is one of nine to have managed NUFC under Mike Ashley.

I thought I would have a look back at these Newcastle United Managers of the past fourteen years.

I have included only the ones who had any kind of permanent deal in that time, so I have excluded Alan Shearer as he was only given eight games at the end of that 2008/09 season.

When looking at these Newcastle United Managers under Mike Ashley, I am looking at them from a position of trust. As in, what order I would place them when it came to trusting them, whether trust in their ability, what they said to fans, how they behaved generally.

Starting with the best and working down!

Kevin Keegan

That was easy.

The person that Newcastle fans trust implicitly, more than any other person.

Integrity is his middle name, doing the right thing for all the right reasons.

Treated disgracefully and forced out of the club. Mike Ashley’s worst ever moment as Newcastle United owner, which is saying something.

Rafa Benitez

It was a case of mutual love and respect from the very start.

Rafa actually approaching Newcastle United following things not working out at Real Madrid and McClaren sacked by Newcastle United.

The Spaniard could have simply waited a few months and surely have been offered the pick of some great jobs.

Instead he saw the potential that will always exist at NUFC and risked his career by tying himself to Mike Ashley.

Did everything asked of him and more but Ashley was determined to force Benitez out of the club because he wouldn’t accept being a puppet.

Chris Hughton

Mike Ashley gave him the job because Hughton was cheap and available (already at Newcastle) and thought he was was somebody he could manipulate and push around.

Chris Hughton surprised everybody when doing such a brilliant job in his first management post.

Promotion as champions and then safely in mid-table in the Premier League…but rumours suggested that Mike Ashley was wanting him out because he wasn’t prepared to be a puppet, including not prepared to sell players.

Ashley sacked Chris Hughton despite a mid-table placing, so he could bring in Alan Pardew who had been sacked by third tier Southampton in December 2010.

Sam Allardyce

The manager Mike Ashley inherited, Allardyce appointed shortly before Shepherd and Hall sold out.

The football rapidly got worse and worse after some initial wins gave us false hope that he wasn’t the disastrous appointment we all believed him to be.

Arguably more annoying since he was sacked with his regular verbal attacks as a pundit on Newcastle fans and Rafa Benitez, whilst talking up Ashley, Bruce and others.

Steve McClaren

He actually looks a sensible appointment compared to many of those further down this list.

Which is pretty shocking when you consider McClaren had been sacked by a Championship club.

Just wasn’t very good.

At least not too embarrassing when it came to putting out propaganda for Mike Ashley at press conferences, compared to some…

Joe Kinnear

This was just lunacy.

JFK coming in and swearing his head off at an early press conference, a drinking partner of Mike Ashley’s.

There was no real cunning or deception on this one, just the owner giving the job to somebody he happened to know, sadly a person who should never ever have got the job.

When he came back as director of football after Ashley offered him a job during a drinking session, there was plenty of deception that time.

Ashley using low levels of fan expectations of JFK so that they then then would blame the DOF for no players bought for over a year, when in reality it was just a front for Ashley not wanting to spend any money whatsoever in that time period.

John Carver

The madness continued with this one.

I still can’t believe that Carver was ever in charge.

Some truly dreadful press conferences as well as the rubbish football. John Carver willing to say absolutely anything on behalf of Mike Ashley, in order to try and stay in the job.

Alan Pardew

Carver had of course learnt from the master.

Pardew totally embarrassing as press conference after press conference he came out with some right nonsense.

Started off his reign by saying there was no chance of Andy Carroll being sold, within weeks Andy Carroll had been sold.

Steve Bruce

For me, the very worst of the worst.

Has zero clue about management, a desperate career of failure where his biggest success has been the number of jobs he has managed to get.

The whole fake Geordie thing is just shocking, we all know how he was almost crying when supposed to be the foot in both camps pundit on Sky Sports when we hammered Man Utd 5-0.

His press conferences since coming to Newcastle United have been laughable.

As well as all the slavish Ashley stuff, claiming he had piles of fanmail letters saying what a great job he was / is doing, we believe you Steve…

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