Amanda Staveley revisits Newcastle United statement of 11 months ago
Amanda Staveley is now very much on the front foot.
With all eyes / thoughts once more on a Newcastle United Takeover, July is the month when Mike Ashley’s legal moves against the Premier League are set to kick-off.
In a clearly coordinated campaign involving both potential buyers and seller, Ashley and the Saudi financed bidders are trying to get as much as possible into the public domain.
Amanda Staveley is spokeswoman for the bidding side and as well as statements from Mike Ashley and his people, she has been busy firing off letters to politicians and doing her best to whip up public support.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Amanda Staveley has thanked MPs such as Chi Onwurah for their support, as well as the Newcastle United fans, from whom she says she has received ‘literally tens of thousands of letters.’
(Obviously, Newcastle fans are very much desperate to be rid of Mike Ashley and hopefully welcome ambitious new owners. However…and hopefully not being too pedantic, but is Ms Staveley overegging the pudding a little bit and having a bit of a Steve Bruce ‘I get sacks of fan mail I do’ moment. Yes Amanda Staveley has the overwhelming support of the Newcastle fans as the figurehead of the takeover bid, but I wouldn’t even know where to send a letter to even if I wanted to write to her, never mind tens of thousands of you having already supposedly having done so…)
Anyway, Amanda Staveley via Sky Sports has called for ‘more of the same’ from Newcastle fans, MPs and anybody else trying to help make the takeover happen.
Amanda Staveley speaking to Sky Sports – July 2021:
“The MPs in the North have been incredible…and not just in the North of England, everyone has.
“We have been so grateful for all the support, the letters that we have had.
“We have to keep going and I have seen some responses coming from Chi [Onwurah – Newcastle Central MP whose constituency includes St James Park] recently, she has been incredibly supportive, as has the entire community, so we want more of the same.
“I would also like to thank very much the Newcastle United fans.
“The tens of thousands of letters I have had, literally tens of thousands of letters.
“We so want to be able to respond to everybody and we just want to say thank you very much for everything that you’ve done, to help to try to get this investment made.”
Not wanting to devalue the calls for support from the fans and wider community but ‘Lets make some noise’ (Copyright – Alan Robson whipping up the crowd pre-match back in the Keegan days, not that we needed much whipping up back then…) hasn’t really taken us very far these past 11 months and more…
I mention 11 months because exactly that time ago, Amanda Staveley released a very similar statement as to what she is saying via Sky Sports now.
Back at the end of July 2020, Amanda Staveley speaking on behalf of the bidding consortium after they announced they had pulled out of the takeover bid, said it was now down to the Newcastle fans to demand answers.
This led to Newcastle fans setting up a petition calling on Boris Johnson to launch an independent investigation into the Premier League’s takeover process, a petition which eventually had the backing of over 110,000 fans and general public.
At the same time, NUST (Newcastle United Supporters Trust) helped enable a mass letter / email writing exercise to get Newcastle fans to write to their local MPs, asking them to show their support and to write to the Premier League urging them to show transparency.
That leading to this Amanda Staveley statement exactly 11 months ago…
Statement from Amanda Staveley released via NUST: – 7 August 2020:
“I would like to thank the Newcastle United Supporters’ Trust and all Newcastle fans for their incredible backing and huge efforts over the past few days and beyond. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
“Speaking on behalf of myself and my husband, the Reuben family and the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, we are not just overwhelmed by your support, we are humbled by it.
“Our group has received emails and messages in the thousands and I can’t begin to tell you what that means to us. We do not take it for granted.
“We understand that a strong Supporters’ Trust means a strong Newcastle.
“And we understand and have seen again just how powerful and beautiful a united Newcastle can truly be.
“Thank you again.
Newcastle fans are of course completely frustrated, angry, furious…after over 14 years of Mike Ashley who could blame them. That frustration made far far far worse, due to the fact that at last there had / has been an enticing alternative sitting there, ambitious new potential owners with funds.
It has all been a bit like that Crystal Maze TV show, where you have to complete a challenge and then get out of the room in around three minutes or so. For Newcastle United fans, we have been stuck in that room for 15 months or more, yet we still can’t find a way out and the clock is ticking on our Newcastle United supporting lives.
Sadly, the reality as we all know, is that football fans only have so much (no?) power. Longer-term, maybe the Government’s fan-led review into football might, just might, improve the power/value of fans but realistically that is a long long way off and imagining some massive leap forward for football supporters takes a lot of believing.
Newcastle fans and MPs and whoever else, couldn’t have done much more than they did 11 or so months ago, with petitions, letter / email writing, MPs writing to the Premier League and so on. Yet that alone was never going to get us anywhere.
It is the success or otherwise of the Mike Ashley legal challenge(s) that will dictate whether there is any shift in a Newcastle United takeover actually been enabled to happen.
If there are legally compelling arguments then we can be very optimistic BUT if instead we are relying simply on ‘lets make some noise’, then it all feels very much like Groundhog Day yet again and again, for Newcastle United fans.
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]