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Opinion

Newcastle United BIG Reveal

3 weeks ago
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I am looking forward to this Newcastle United BIG Reveal.

Well at least that is what I assume is going to happen…

Leadership is a dirty word when it comes to Newcastle United and Mike Ashley and his head minion Lee Charnley are the very best illustrations of that.

It is over 22 months ago when Lee Charnley said this, quotes from the Arsenal match programme (see below) on 11 August 2019:

“I accept we need to do more from a communication perspective moving forward.

“There is certainly a need to communicate more as a club and to let fans know where we are heading collectively.

“That goes beyond the responsibility of just the head coach or manager in isolation; something we have relied on far too heavily in the past.”

Needless to say, these promises have not been kept to, Lee Charnley and Mike Ashley refusing to communicate with the fans except on the very rarest of occasions. Indeed, things have got (didn’t think it was possible!) even worse since those Ashley / Charnley programme notes ahead of Steve Bruce’s first game / defeat in August 2019.

The very thing they promised not to do, they have done even more, making it so that Steve Bruce is the only person who ever speaks about what is or isn’t supposedly happening at Newcastle United.

No surprise then that Steve Bruce has completely disappeared once the season ended and with him has gone any communication whatsoever from NUFC. Nothing at all this past month of consequence since the Head Coach returned to his beloved north west. Even when the new fixtures were announced last week, not even a single quote put out by the club from Steve Bruce…or indeed anybody.

So what about this Newcastle United BIG Reveal?

Well, maybe this is going to be the massive turning point under Mike Ashley and he has top people working on a seriously big event where EVERYTHING will be revealed at one headline grabbing event, with the following made public…

Are Fabian Schar, Federico Fernandez, Andy Carroll, Jacob Murphy, Dwight Gayle and Paul Dummett under contract for next season?

After Mike Ashley closed them all down, there is not a single official NUFC physical shop that Newcastle fans can go to and buy official merchandise. Media claims are that Castore(***see below) are going to reopen the shop at St James Park and run it independently of NUFC, or in partnership.

No kit manufacturer confirmed for next season, again, media claims that this is Castore(***).

No sign so far of any of the three new official NUFC strips for the 2021/22 season.

Still no sign of the official club accounts, these are for the 2019/20 season and in the meantime the 2020/21 season has been and gone. Newcastle the only Premier League club yet to reveal any financial information for the 2019/20 season.

No announcement of 2021/22 NUFC season ticket details or prices, unlike the other 19 Premier League clubs.

No reassurance that even if there is no takeover, Mike Ashley will ensure the team / squad are properly strengthened ahead of the new season.

Exactly how many NUFC staff are still furloughed after 15 months of the scheme and why is Mike Ashley taking taxpayer money to pay his workers, when almost every other PL club owner isn’t?

Has a serious / realistic bid been made to buy Joe Willock and if not, why not?

No home friendly / friendlies.

No new signings…

Maybe most baffling and most shameful, is that Mike Ashley and his minions have made all but zero efforts to promote their own charitable arm’s fundraising efforts this past month. As in previous years, players donate used match worn shirts and shorts, plus player worn training kit, with the Newcastle United Foundation having weekly auctions on Ebay. This is the fourth and final week of auctions and all I can find from the club backing these auctions, is one Tweet back at the start of the auctions in May. Absolutely nothing since then, nothing I could find on the official club site, or official club Twitter since that original Tweet. All very bizarre but as a consequence potential bargains to be had, with match worn shirts and shorts plus player worn training kit at rock bottom prices as things stand – Go HERE to see the player / match work shirts and training gear on Ebay. The Foundation would have made far more money in the auctions if having proper backing from the club.

Newcastle United, always more questions than answers.

Lee Charnley in the match programme for the Arsenal match on Sunday 11 August 2019:

“We go into today’s match following changes on and off the pitch over the summer months.

“I appreciate it has been at times, and certainly during the early part of the break, a period of uncertainty for supporters.

“We want to communicate clearly and proactively, but it is important that we do so at the right time.

“Sometimes we must adopt a ‘no comment’ policy and I accept that can be – and has been – frustrating. There are reasons behind that approach.

“Often, there are legalities at play or we may take the decision in order to respect the integrity of a process or the individuals involved. What we won’t do is fuel speculation by offering a running commentary.

“Instead, when we have something definitive to say, we will say it, as we did as soon as Rafa’s position became clear.

“We understand and expected the disappointment that Rafa’s departure caused. We strongly believe we went beyond what could reasonably be asked in order to keep him. But let’s be clear, he moved to China for money.

“Whilst I have stated above that I felt our approach during the summer was necessary, I accept we need to do more from a communication perspective moving forward.

“There is certainly a need to communicate more as a club and to let fans know where we are heading collectively.

“That goes beyond the responsibility of just the head coach or manager in isolation; something we have relied on far too heavily in the past.

“We want to give you more of an insight into what happens across the club and you will therefore be hearing more from me, as you are today…”

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