Well, that’s it – We finally have our football club back
I had thought about this moment a lot, especially over the last couple of years when it appeared that we were edging closer to the sale of the club.
Who would it eventually be and how would it happen?
To think that three days ago we were none the wiser and no closer to seeing the back of Mike Ashley, to now, today, Newcastle United under new ambitious ownership. It’s hard to take in. It probably won’t hit me until I walk back through those turnstiles and grace that hallowed pitch on my trip back home this Christmas.
As I flicked through my twitter feed and saw thousands of Geordies out in the street partying, singing, embracing, it was 2am here in Singapore. I sat alone on my balcony, with a can in hand and shed tears. I don’t even know why to be honest, it’s a bit silly when you think about it. However, I feel happier today, I feel an inch taller.
With no new signings before the January window, will things really change though? Of course, they will.
Without enacting my inner Sir Bobby, the roar in the stadium will be different, the sense of positivity in the air will be present, there will be no Sports Direct signage littered around our famous stadium, there will be no negative chants directed to the club’s ownership. There will be ambition in the director’s box, passion on the pitch, pedigree in the manager’s technical area. It’ll be freezing like, but there’ll be togetherness, warmth, united. Newcastle.
Nobody knows what is going to happen next and that’s the beauty of it. Newcastle United have been predictable for far too long. Only a few weeks ago, Shearer summed it up perfectly:
“I hate what my club is or has become… It’s been a long time now. It’s a hollow and it’s an empty football club. There’s no hope or ambition and I’m pretty sick of it to be honest. It’s copy, paste, repeat every season.”
There’ll be no copy and paste every season. Supporting Newcastle United has always been a rollercoaster but this is going to be a different ride. It’ll be like going from getting hit by the same annoying kid at the dodgems on the town moor every summer, to riding the biggest ride at the biggest theme parks.
Please don’t mistake that comment as a cry for Champions League nights, trips to Wembley and title challenges. It’s not. We just wanted our club back. There’s a scene on Purely Belter, in which Jerry and Sewell discuss what will happen when they finally get their season tickets – Sewell suggests “proper pies” and Jerry says “Nah man Sewell man – respect.”
Throw in proper pies though, throw in a stadium that is not decaying in front of our eyes, a sports direct advertisement building smack-bam in our city centre. An academy run for the many, not the few. A training ground fit for elite level footballers, not cheapskate managing directors. An owner that treats club legends and staff with respect, and a manger with more than just an ounce of decorum.
It has never been too much to ask for.
We may still not win anything, you never know, football is a funny old game. There was a time not too long ago that Newcastle were the most exciting team in world football with the most expensive footballer in the world leading their line up. We still never won anything. However, that’s not the point – in fact it has never been the point. We now believe again that we can win something, maybe not next season, maybe not the season after, but we’re on the right path and we have hope on our side.
I have long said that Newcastle United is the easiest club to run, and the easiest club to manage. Why? You only have to do one thing. Get the fans onside.
Amanda, Jamie Rueben, PIF – if you do the right things, say the right things, then we’ll take you 75% of the way there. We’ll back you, we’ll buy the tickets, we’ll buy the replica shirts, we’ll do the hard work for you. Just get the fans onside and you are already 75% of the way to where you want to be.
I could go on but I think that’s enough – I’m going for a beer with a fellow Newcastle United fan today. It won’t be the same as the Beehive on a Saturday afternoon with your friends and family before the game but I’ll get there soon.
So will Newcastle United… finally. Hope again.
Well, that’s it. We finally have our football club back.
You can follow Jonathan on Twitter @JonathanComyn
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]