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Opinion

Simon Jordan needs to get his facts right if commenting on what’s happening at Newcastle United

1 year ago
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Simon Jordan has been talking about Newcastle United. Again.

The former Crystal Palace owner debating with Jim White the progress made at St James’ Park since Mike Ashley was thankfully removed, after 14 years of neglect and less than zero ambition, as he only used the club to benefit himself and his retail empire.

In less than 15 months, Newcastle United have gone from looking near relegation certainties in second bottom of the Premier League. and out of the Carabao Cup at the first hurdle.

To now third top of the Premier League and one of the four favourites to qualify for the Champions League, plus only 90 minutes away from a potential Carabao Cup final.

Jim White declaring on Talksport that Newcastle United “have not been Johnny Splattercash” since the new owners and Eddie Howe replaced Mike Ashley and Steve Bruce.

Simon Jordan responding with…

“Newcastle United have done a lot of things right but they have spent £70million on a forward…

“Let’s get something right.

“They are not exactly travelling incognito are they (when it comes to transfer market activity)?

“They are buying players at decent levels.

“It was never going to be that they were going to sign Mbappe, at this stage on the journey…

“Newcastle United are a vision that is yet to arrive.

“Newcastle United, to me, are an engaging and exciting team to watch.

“They are an exciting football club right now.

“I don’t agree with the ownership model.

“I am not an admirer of Amanda Staveley…I (do though) admire the fact that she put a deal together (to buy Newcastle United).

“That was remarkable, getting it across the line in the end.

“The point is though, Newcastle United as a football club, which I have affection for, they are exciting.

“The atmosphere shows you what a galvanised club can look like.”

Whilst I agree with some of what he has to say, Simon Jordan needs to get his facts right if commenting on what’s happening at Newcastle United.

He refers to Newcastle spending ‘£70m’ on a striker, which just isn’t true. The deal for Alexander Isak was £59m (plus £4m potential future add-ons).

As for pointing to the signing of Isak as some kind of key reason for what has happened so far at Newcastle United, is laughable.

Since Eddie Howe and the new owners have been able to be active in the transfer market and new signings under the new regime have been on the pitch, Newcastle have played 39 Premier League matches, winning 22, drawing 11 and losing only six.

When it comes to the club’s record signing, injury has limited him to only five Premier League appearances so far, three starts and two sub appearances. Those appearances bringing three draws and one defeat, before then Isak scored the winner against Fulham after coming off the bench in the last PL home match.

Also, more than two thirds of the money spent, was invested in two 22 year olds (Isak and Botman) and a 24 year old (Bruno). These are very much signings for the long-term, not solely big money signings for the here and now, with a quick gamble / dash for very expensive short-term success.

Indeed, between the three of them, the trio have only made a combined total of 48 Premier League starts so far for Newcastle United. Bruno with 11 last season and 17 in the current campaign, 17 for Botman, three for Isak.

Instead, it has actually been the relatively low cost signings, less than £50m total outlay on Burn, Targett, Pope and Trippier, that has been at the heart of the transformation at St James’ Park.

Another factor that is obvious to all hopefully, including Simon Jordan, is that Newcastle United are only where they are now, due to the impact Eddie Howe has had on countless players he inherited, who had been dragged so low by Bruce and Ashley, with Joelinton, Almiron and Schar just three of those who have been helped to shine in this progressive new Newcastle United.

Another factor that has to be put at the very forefront, if Simon Jordan or anybody else is talking about Newcastle United’s recent spending, is that as well as taking into consideration Eddie Howe and the new owners inherited a relegation situation AND a squad that hadn’t seen proper levels of investment for years, it has to be also seen in the context of what is happening in the Premier League overall.

This 2022/23 season is seeing the highest spending ever in Premier League history.

A report this week from the CIES Football Observatory looked at the biggest spending clubs around the world this season and published this top twenty, figures are all in millions of Euros and the left hand column is the total spend this season for each of the twenty clubs, including future add-ons:

As

As you can see from this top 20 above, the top five (all Premier League clubs) have spent approx £1.33bn (€1.50bn) just between that quintet. That roughly equates to the entire spending combined, of all the clubs in the next two highest spending leagues (Serie A and Ligue 1).

Chelsea have committed to an estimated ridiculous €555m (£490m) spending already this season under the new owners, signing 15 players.

This is more than double the amount spent by the second biggest spender: Manchester United (€272 million (£240m) for 7 players).

West Ham United, Nottingham Forest and Wolverhampton Wanderers complete an all-Premier League top five.

Newcastle United are one of the 11 Premier League clubs in this top 14 but a world away from the likes of Chelsea and even Man Utd.

The NUFC figure (14th highest) so far this season when it comes to transfer spending is €144m (£127m), which actually looks relatively modest compared to what is happening at other Premier League clubs!

The likes of West Ham, Forest and Wolves are in that highest spending top five and yet they are all deeply involved in the relegation fight, despite spending far more money than Newcastle United so far this season.

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