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Opinion

Newcastle United have done a 180 – Plain to see

1 month ago
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We need Newcastle United playing football matches.

It might seem a bit of a bizarre / obvious thing to say but here it is.

With this vacuum (Newcastle United having their Premier League winter break), it ends up getting filled with nonsense.

It is now ten days since that excellent performance but cruel final scoreline against Manchester City, it feels like a lifetime ago.

The fact that this winter break coincides with the Premier League’s transfer window has made it into a double whammy of nonsense and mischief, some people will believe absolutely anything.

I find it hilarious that so many Newcastle United fans who ridicule the media day after day, week after week, month after month. Yet when it suits them, they will quote what any journalist is saying, as though it is absolute fact, because it coincides with something they think or want to push.

It has always been the same, for whatever reason some Newcastle United fans absolutely thrive on negativity. This isn’t a new thing, even in the brilliant exhilarating days of Kevin Keegan in the 90s, we might at times have been regularly winning 3-1, 4-1, 5-1 and yet I knew odd fans who when you spoke to them, only wanted to talk about the goal that had been conceded, despite the overwhelming win(s).

Fast forward to the present day and it is so so so much worse.

With social media, comments sections and suchlike, so many Newcastle United fans (and it is exactly the same with fanbases at other clubs) desperate for attention, to be noticed. So many of them thinking / knowing that the ‘best’ route to getting this attention is to be extreme. Which in so many cases equals going to ridiculous extremes in claiming how supposedly terrible / shocking things are now at NUFC, how the club / team is allegedly going downhill.

With the recent transfer speculation on Newcastle United players who other clubs are supposedly trying to sign, I have laughed out loud at some of these attention seekers amongst our fanbase, claiming this is just like Mike Ashley selling the likes of Carroll and Cabaye, or we are back to the 80s again and selling Waddle, Beardsley and Gascoigne.

Get a grip.

If anybody honestly believes this, they should go and have a lie down.

The reality is that Newcastle United has done a complete 180 since the change of ownership.

I am not saying they are perfect but what I do know for sure is that these owners will do everything they can to make this NUFC team successful on the pitch. Not because these owners are lifetime fans BUT because the only way they get what they want in the long-term (money, influence, prestige, power etc) is via the players on the pitch winning football matches.

This is the opposite of Mike Ashley who just tried to crawl from season to season, asset stripping the club as he went along and using it for free to promote his retail empire and make him ever richer (he was just about a billionaire when he bought Newcastle United and a multi-billionaire by the time he sold the club). He sold a Carroll or Cabaye mid-season without blinking, not caring what it meant for the short-term and especially not the longer-term.

Newcastle United are NOT going to suddenly sell all of Isak, Bruno, Botman, Gordon and Livramento to the highest bidders.

They might sell all of Lascelles, Almiron, Longstaff, Trippier and Wilson, but I don’t think so.

However, if these Newcastle United owners did sell this last named quintet of players, for example, then the way that FFP works and the change in FFP stretching that those sales (for example) could bring about, might in reality then allow Eddie Howe and the owners the flexibility to then bring in a quintet (or more) of signings such as the next Isak, Bruno, Botman, Livramento and Gordon.

This is how FFP works…

Selling Lascelles, Almiron, Longstaff, Trippier and Wilson for say a combined £60m / £70m, could then allow Eddie Howe and the owners the flexibility to spend maybe anything up to £300m on new players.

We are not talking about selling players to cover losses, or selling star players to bring in inferior cheaper ones and the cash disappearing.

We are talking about Newcastle United having done that complete 180 from the Ashley days and any selling and buying / buying and selling, is all about increasing the quality and depth of this NUFC squad.

Every club has the same FFP limitations.

It is just all about where you are at any particular time. Plus of course not all Premier League clubs want to go down the route of pushing things to the limit when it comes to FFP, spending far more on players than the actual transfer fees you bring in.

Newcastle’s own position is clearly one where the owners want to spend more money, push FFP as far as possible. However, due to how much money spent in recent transfer windows, we are very close to our FFP limitations.

So we need to create FFP stretch (by selling) now to bring a player or two in during January, or wait until summer.

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