50 things for new Newcastle United owners to get done
The new Newcastle United owners have at last completed the takeover after a near two year saga.
Last Thursday (7 October 2021) was the date it came to pass, over 14 years of Mike Ashley now thankfully history.
I know it is only six days into the project but a major rebuilding job lies ahead to get NUFC to the place that it needs to be.
However, just to help out, I have compiled this easy reference list of 50 things for the new Newcastle United owners to get cracking on…
Sack the Head Coach.
Hire a new Manager.
Sack Lee Charnley.
Hire an experienced CEO/MD with football club experience.
Implement a new top-down structure that works for all.
Hire a Sporting Director or Experienced Director of Football.
Implement an efficient and sustainable recruitment structure – as well as a new Chief Scout.
Sign some players!
Get rid of the deadwood – players and staff.
Decide early who we are going to build our team around – ASM, Almiron, Longstaff, Dubravka?
Invest in the training facilities
Invest in the academy facilities
Complete restructuring of the youth process at Newcastle United
Clean St James Park from top to bottom (not literally Amanda, Mehrdad and Jamie – I mean hire someone to do it!)
Reach out to Kevin Keegan – invite him to a game and / or offer an ambassadorial role.
Build a statue of Kevin Keegan
Reach out to Jonas Gutierrez – privately or publicly – invite him back for a game as a guest.
Bring Alan Shearer into the club in some role, whether an ambassador or advisor.
Remove all Sports Direct signage.
New sponsorships… do away with Fun88 and all hollow betting companies.
Engage with the fans directly.
Look into the possibility of safe standing at St James Park.
Engage with the local community – Foundation, Foodbank, Council.
Rename ‘Nine Bar’ back to Shearer’s (and make them do better pints as well).
Provide clarity on the Strawberry Place development and future ground expansion (if it truly is no longer possible, then let us know!)
Install a philosophy – share it with fans – and stick to it.
Make a statement – whether this be with the new manager, or a new signing. A statement signing or a grand gesture will go a long way to appeasing fans in the short term.
Improve the club’s commercial revenue in short / medium term.
Appoint an actual SLO (Supporters Liaison Officer) who works in the interest of supporters.
Reintroduce the fans forum (properly!).
Clarify Newcastle United’s debt situation – do we owe anything to Mike Ashley, whether actual cash or ongoing services (stadium advertising etc) he is going to benefit from?
Address the prices of Newcastle shirts / memorabilia.
Stand up for NUFC fans with the PL, Sky etc. Kick off times especially.
Revamp the NUFC box office so that it works efficiently.
Bring back a dedicated singing section and / or provide support to fans in the Gallowgate corner / Wor Flags.
Invest in the women’s football team.
Use the club as a vehicle to promote good practices – pride campaigns, fighting racism in football etc.
Bring back affordable fan travel to away games – or work with local authorities, such as LNER / railway, to ensure affordable travel for supporters.
Bring back proper entrance music… Carmina Burana… followed by Local Hero before the game.
Invest in sustainable and long-term development plans in the local area.
Lead PL clubs nationally on fan issues – be a vehicle for positive change – rather than Man U, Man City, Chelsea, Liverpool etc.
An NUFC open day – training, chance for kids to meet the players, new manager etc.
Improve the socials, YouTube channel, twitter. We have fallen so far behind our rivals on the media side of things.
Support football in the local area – not necessarily financially – but set up official relationships / affiliations with clubs to support and lean on their talent.
Don’t interact with fans on social media as individuals (just official NUFC account). Do things properly and professionally. I can’t think of any positive example of football owners interacting with fans on social media – always a red flag.
Show your face – attend games – don’t hide.
Bring attention and investment BACK to Newcastle. Concerts. Events etc.
Don’t be afraid to do, or to try. We don’t demand a team that wins, we don’t a club that tries.
Get the fans on side.
Bring back a proper family paddock.
Memo to new Newcastle United owners: Amanda, Mehrdad, Jamie – If you need any help with this I’m happy to have a beer or a call sometime! Only a call away.
You can follow Jonathan on Twitter @jonnyinsg
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