What Really Happened To Sam Allardcye

We think we may may have sorted out what really happened to Sam on Wednesday afternoon, after which it was announced that Sam had left Newcastle United by mutual agreement.


Chris Mort – his proposition to Sam was met with outright rejection

It seems from what Mike Ashley’s friend Paul Kemsley has said, what was leaked from an insider of the Newcastle United Board, what Bobby Moncur surmised yesterday on Sky Sports News, and finally what we know about the players Sam was wanting to bring to Newcastle – that the following scenario is very likely what was played out late Wednesday afternoon, and ended up surprising both Chris Mort, the Board and Big Sam. Sam and Newcastle agreed to terminate their association.

These are some of the major points that we think played out before and during a meeting between Chris Mort and Sam Allardyce, after Sam’s meeting with the media on Wednesday afternoon:

  • The board was getting a little tired of the defensive tactics of Sam, and like the fans, they wanted to see more attacking and enterprising football from the team and an attempt to win every game.
  • Sam was not Ashley’s choice as manager but Mike let Sam have time to see what he could do.
  • Mike didn’t think the majority of players brought in during the summer were the appropriate players to turn Newcastle around and be an entertaining and attacking side. In fact some seemed to have been failures. The acquisition of Barton and his subsequent arrest over Christmas certainly didn’t help Sam.
  • When Mike heard that Big Sam wanted to bring Kevin Nolan in from Bolton and that Sam was willing to accept a good offer for Emre, Mike had some second thoughts about whether he wanted to bankroll more of Sam’s players in January, since he didn’t see a change for the better, to a more attacking style of play or more exciting players.
  • Chris and the Board wanted to be fair to Sam, and at least tell him the concerns they had, and at least ask him whether he was willing to change his tactics. We think Chris and the Board agreed that Sam be approached and be told that they would like to see a more attacking and enterprising team on the field.
  • When Chris talked to Sam he thought this was an invasion of his responsibilities at the club, which are the players and the playing side of things, and flatly rejected Chris’s points. Sam has always wanted no interference on the playing side of the club, and has mentioned that several times while at Newcastle.
  • Sam and Chris then agreed they would part their ways because of this fundamental disagreement. We don’t know if this is true – but from the various bits of information we know about, this could certainly be a valid and reasonable way to explain how Sam and Newcastle United surprisingly parted company.

That’s what we think may have happened or something close to that. It would also explain why both sides were not expecting what happened, and it also explains why a new manager was not all lined up to replace Big Sam, after he left the club. And that’s why Mike and Chris are scrambling to appoint a new manager that will field an attacking and enterprising team at Newcastle.

Sam wasn’t expecting to be asked to change his tactics and Chris wasn’t expecting Sam’s strong defense of his management style and complete control of the playing side of the club.

That’s what we think happened.

What do you think?

Comments always welcome.

46 comments so far

  • Neil A H

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:37 AM

    Comment #1

    This seems the most likely scenario since it was so surprising and Sam was talking about the Man U game earlier in the day.

  • Lazy

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:38 AM

    Comment #2

    I think they found the “Freddy Shepherds guide to being a chairman” and they started following the examples.

    The only way this will make any sense to me is if they already have someone; someone that is better than Sam. Mclaren, Rednapp, Hughes etc are NOT any better.

  • Leo

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:41 AM

    Comment #3

    i think your not too far off there ed.

  • Leo

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:42 AM

    Comment #4

    ashley wants attractive attacking football like most toon fans, cant blame him for not liking the boring dross being served up by sam. ffs he wasnt good enough get over him. i sure have

  • SuperShearer

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:43 AM

    Comment #5

    This is a very worrying theory as it would mean that the decision to sack Sam was made in the heat of the moment. I hate to disagree but I don’t see this as being the case. I think Ashley has a new man lined up and was waiting for something to happen before he pulled the trigger. That something was sam wanting to bring in the wrong kind of player and probably asking for too much money for new players. As a result Sam is shown the door and Ashley and Mort get on the blower to their man. I have a feeling that whoever this man is doesn’t want to look like they are either jumping ship from their present club or indeed stabbing Sam in the back hence the frustrating delay. Ah so many theories.

  • Phil,Gosforth

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:44 AM

    Comment #6

    I am not so fussed about the way he went but why is more important.
    MA is a business man.Sitting in the middle of your clientele is the best market research you can get.
    He is beginning to realise what his customers want ie. not the dross we’ve had so far this season.
    Mike Ashley doesn’t have to win something at NUFC to make money.Fat Freddy did OK out of our lack of success didn’t he :D.
    He does realise though that happy people spend moneh.No-one was happy with BSA.( and if you were,then I cannot understand you).Make us happy MA!

  • Beardsley's Love Child

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:44 AM

    Comment #7

    Largely agree. Though I would probably say that there was something else that happened between the Mort/Sam tactics discussion and them agreeing to “part ways”.

    And by greater I mean that it would take more than a disagreement on tactics and meddling by Sam to cause Mort et al pull the trigger on him.

    Because if they agreed to part ways due to the fundamental disagreement on tactics discussion, Sam would not have been suprised by getting the sack. Either that or Sam’s ego is so immense he just thought it was an empty threat.

    Maybe Sam dared Mort to do it…

    Maybe Ashley’s greatest prize interest suddenly made himself known…

    Maybe the straw broke the camel’s back?

    FWIW we didn’t know of Ashley’s intent for the club until well after he bought it, he’s pulled spontaneous feats of pique before, maybe he just got a wild hair up his arse and told Sam to ‘feck off…

  • george R

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:47 AM

    Comment #8

    This is probably what did happen and I think the board did the right thing. Although on the face of things (and every single non toon supporting southern bloke I have spoken to thinks he wasnt given enough time) 24 games does not seem alot but I can honestly say I have not seem a single improvement since the start of the season. lets get José Mourinho he wont attack like keegan did but at least his teams did attack with purpose which is more than we have done all season (except 2nd half against Arsenal at st Jame’s) fingers crossed we get it right this time.

  • John in Warwick

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:49 AM

    Comment #9

    I’m worried. However…

    I think that Mike and Chris would have been better prepared for such a meeting. As a businessman myself, I prepare for potential outcomes of important meetings, and consider what my reaction will be to certain developments during the meeting.

    There is no way that Mike and Chris would have allowed the meeting to develop to the point that they would leave their business without a manager or a suitable replacement lined up.

    Come on guys, this is not rocket science. Mike is too smart and Chris is a professional. They wouldn’t allow emotion to lead to this situation without a contingency….or more likely, they engineered the meeting and the outcome.

    I expect that they have their man already, and if they don’t then god help us.

  • Edd Case

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:49 AM

    Comment #10

    I don’t think any of us will really know the truth.

    I will definitely buy into this though…

    Ashley has been sounding out a replacement for Sam for a long time and probably on Tuesday PM or Wednesday AM, got the green light on his top man.

    He then asked Mort to call a meeting with Sam and end his time at Toon.

    I’d bet my mortgage that Mort and Ashley had met with Sam before many, many times and stated what they wanted to see on the pitch.
    I also think that Sam is very arrogant and continued to do what he felt was right and play a team like he wanted to, despite what his boss and the fans wanted.

    So, Sam’s been told, “you don’t play attractive, attacking football, which is what I (MA) and the fans want to see, I’ve asked you before to show us a team we want to watch and we’re still turning out dreadfull non-performances, so, sling your hook”…

  • adam

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:55 AM

    Comment #11

    i like the newcastle banner at the top with the question mark for the manager. maybe a question mark should be put over the players heads.

    we will beat man utd this weekend 2-1

  • ripleyiii

    Jan 11, 2008 at 12:59 AM

    Comment #12

    I too feel this couldn’t simply boil down to a very loud spat. Sam was, himself, frustrated at the choice of players eventually available to him this summer, saying they were not necessarily his “first choices.” He quickly snapped up Barton, who, I believe, was a “first choice,” with the intent to cure him of his sorry ways. This became an outright failure with the Christmas arrest.

    Could this have been the straw that broke the camel’s back? Could this have been only the latest squabble with Mort and Ashley?

    It is curious to note that Ashley hadn’t been sitting with Big Sam for a few matches, and I don’t know if you have an explanation for this. I don’t think it was because of his kit.

  • shirts

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:00 AM

    Comment #13

    If this is true, doesn’t it mean the fat goof wearing the Alan Smith jersey thinks he’s a football manager? The precedent is set that it’s his club and he makes the on field decisions: Lots and lots of meddling to come. Bad news?

  • Chris Bunton

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:04 AM

    Comment #14

    Lazy, Redknapp is far better than Sam, his teams always play the passing game, he’ll sign entertaining players because he’s always been able to spot them… so with more cash to spend he’ll find even better players

  • Jack

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:07 AM

    Comment #15

    And hopefully he’ll bring some of the 7-4 wins.

  • ToonKing

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:09 AM

    Comment #16

    i’m sorry Ed but i don’t adhere to your theory.

    This is NEWCASTLE UNITED, a huge organization, employing many many people and bla bla bla it’s not a pub where people get stabbed cause they say ” Comeeeee onn you twat BURP iiiiiiii ….iiiiii dare youuu tuuuuu stab meee you cuuunnttt”

    Mort and Ashley are pro’s. I’m only starting in business but i know the basic rules. Nothing happens in “the heat of the moment” with a guy worth 2 billion.

    IMO this was a mini-Chelsea. 2 huge Ego-s clashing. Believe you me, every guy rich enough has a huge ego, especially the hard working ones like Mike. They didn’t like each other from day one. Mike is very determine from what i’ve seen, he has his vision of Newcastle and so had Sam, it’s safe to say they didn’t match.

    I simply refuse to believe 2 guys like Mike and Mort would be so amateur to not have a replacement lined up. It’s impossible.

    I’m 100% positive they will announce the new manager tommorow, erm today. Any longer and they will seem like a bunch of noobs, any sooner and it would have seemed like a rude back-stabbing of Sam (well it seems like it anyways. )
    Only problem is that them being new to football nobody knows who they rate as a manager, so it might as well turn out to be the village idiot again like Souness.

    Anyways i gotta get some sleep now, it’s 3 AM over here, and i expect some good or bad, but none the less NEWS tommorow.

  • John in Warwick

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:13 AM

    Comment #17

    By the way I think it is perfectly within the rights of the board to express their wishes to the manager in terms of the product that he turns out.

    The board is there to ensure lots of things… including giving the customers what they are asking for (if they deem it important – which they do ‘cos we pay for everything), making the business financially viable, and guiding the business in terms of general direction.

    In other words, if they thought that Sam (through his actions) was taking the business, , in a direction that they believed was in conflict with the needs of the club, then they have a right to make this clear, whilst offering the opportunity to change.

    I do not believe that this is a case of over involvement by the Board or the owner, and I back Mike and Chris.

    If it turns out that they did not have a plan, then buckle up boys, it’s gonna get scary.

  • John in Warwick

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:19 AM

    Comment #18

    By the way, Ed, if you were an Executive, you should know that the course of events you have described is highly unlikely.

  • Edd Case

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:24 AM

    Comment #19

    I nearly pissed myself reading this from nufc.com

    PS – Here’s a message for Steve Bruce, Phil Brown, David Moyes, Paul Jewell and anyone else who succumbed to the lure of the Sky microphone waved under their noses on Thursday:

    Shut your yap. You don’t know what you’re talking about – try concentrating your efforts on the provincial dung heaps you claim to be in control of

  • Fickle fans

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:25 AM

    Comment #20

    Whats happened is wrong! Rome wasnt built in a day and neither can a club be pulled, from what the fans seem to think is there worst ever era,in 7 months! He had to be given time to build a team for the future.I mean, how many businesses break even in seven months?…not many and it normally takes 3 years. So why do we expect a manager to come in and work miracles in a matter of weeks?……..KEEGAN!…thats why.He was the exception to the rule who also left us in the lurch with no academy.People need t o move on from the “entertainers” era and think more of becoming a big club again with a trophy cabinet to match. If that means 2 years of dull football for 10 years of success then count me in…i mean we’ve gone 31 years without a trophy, why not a few more?Who ever you bring in Mike Ashley you got to give them time….this one will be your decision…GET IT RIGHT!!

  • adamjd2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:38 AM

    Comment #21

    UNBELIEVABLE!!! I 100% defend SA!! I’m getting sick and tired of club owners thinking they can coach a BPL level team. A great coach would have done EXACTLY was SA did. SA’s run at NUFC wasn’t great, but F’ that!! Owner’s need to keep their damn hands out of coaching and worry about the admin side of the sport. NUFC is pissing me off!!

  • goalcentre.com

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:40 AM

    Comment #22

    Are you still around Leo? 🙂

  • adam

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:46 AM

    Comment #23

    adamjd2 you dont know what you’re talking about. sams signing havnt exactly worked out. barton is a joke, smith cant score goals and cant play midfield, geremi is average, rozenhal and cacapa prone to errors. the only exceptions being beye and faye, but even then thats not good enough.

    it is the boards job to make sure the club is running in the right direction otherwise what are they there for

    where are these big sam supporters now?!! mark, leo etc

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:49 AM

    Comment #24

    Oh FGS it’s true we’re gonna ask Redknapp in the morning… unbelievable… Stay at Pompey PLZ u will not unite NUFC.

    Sky sport news.

  • Greg

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:50 AM

    Comment #25

    if we get arry im supporting someone else

  • Leo

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:53 AM

    Comment #26

    ofcourse i am not going to sleep haha

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:55 AM

    Comment #27

    It’s depressing, we’re just going round in circles. I cannot believe this is happening £5 million a year…… Sigh

  • Leo

    Jan 11, 2008 at 1:56 AM

    Comment #28

    gregg dont be fickle. you may regrett it.

    i never supported alardyce adam, i only wanted the best for my club… dont know why youve picked my name out there mate.

  • adamjd2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:05 AM

    Comment #29

    Power hungry owners need to keep out of coaching!!! BA was not the right manager for NUFC, but gives no right for the owners to think they can coach. Ashley and Mort just want a puppet like Ibromovich.

  • adam

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:06 AM

    Comment #30

    theres another leo, leo

  • John in Warwick

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:08 AM

    Comment #31

    Greg … go

    If thats all it takes, then you aint a Toon Fan…

  • adamjd2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:10 AM

    Comment #32

    If NUFC even talks with Jol or Rednapp I’m supporting someone else. They better go big and get Huddink or Van Gaal. Good managers that have proven track record. Heck I hate morinhno but I’d love him becuase he’d tell Ashley and Mort where to stick it.

  • Leo*

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:11 AM

    Comment #33

    reet from now on am putting a star at the end of my name, because i am a star.

  • Leo*

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:16 AM

    Comment #34

    that wasnt a good idea, no my comments have to be moderated again, damn

  • adam

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:16 AM

    Comment #35

    i want big philipe scolari. he knows all the good players, brazilians, portuguses, south americans, and is a big character

  • Leo*

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:19 AM

    Comment #36

    beye and faye werent average signings to be fair, they were the best signings, and are great players in the prime of their career.

    enrique i am sure will be a sucess… i just hope that the fact that a manager chance happens that he doesnt loose his ability in the league that he was building on

  • adamjd2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:21 AM

    Comment #37

    I could def go with him Scolari. The more I think, the more I like. I’m a big Dutch fan though and Huddink and Van Gaal have proven themselves.

  • adam

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:24 AM

    Comment #38

    i think the smart thing to do is get someone to see us through to summer like a shearer, keegan and then get one of the best managers which will be available, especially after euros.

    van gaal, scolari, bilic, etc etc

  • adamjd2

    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:28 AM

    Comment #39

    adam….I can also agree. That would be a good way to go. Gives them time to find a great manager. LOL…give Shearer his debut run just for the second half of the season.

  • Toon_Under

    Jan 11, 2008 at 3:28 AM

    Comment #40

    To some extent what Edd Case has written sounds more logical.

    But the other scenario I would throw out there is that there was always going to be the review of the club, which was going to take around 6 months i thought?? To work out how the club performs and get a good measure you don’t change things, which means no change of manager. Now the 6 month review period is well up, Mike and Chris see that the club are losign money and point to the need to play attractive to keep fans happy to get more money spent. They talk to Allardyce and back him into a corner by saying they will not back him in the transfer window for any of his signings (i think the youth ones were driven by Mort) but he needs to use his summer signings to play more attacking football. He refuses but knows he’s screwed one way or another, the club offer him a way out by mutual consent and they agree on it. And all the young players we sign are there for the new, more trusted manager to work with.

    Harry, while not my first choice, is a step up from Sam. He hasn’t really been backed before (maybe with good reason, who knows) but he can hardly be worse and is good at bringing kids through. Personally I hope we get hiddink or mourinho as they don’t tend to play defensively but rather more balanced when they aren’t attacking and pushing for wins. It can hardly be worse than the fat man…


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