Poor Communication A Real Cause Of Newcastle Problems

Mike Ashley told Newcastle fans more of his vision for the Tyneside club last night in his statement, than he has ever done in the 16 months he has been in charge.

Mike Ashley – never said anything to the fans – about anything

When Chris Mort was Chairman, he would quite regularly stress that Newcastle had a business model of bringing in young players, and developing them, and had put in place the three recruitment executives, led by Dennis Wise.

But since Chris has left, Derek Llambias has been an absolute disaster as his replacement, and under the role of Managing Director.  Llambias never communicated with fans, and it looks like the board never said anything more to the players either, as it looks like veterans Shay Given, Nicky Butt and Michael Owen were furious after the Hull City defeat.

Apparently the players know as little as the fans as to what has been going on.

Mike Ashley has been let down by the people he put in charge to run the club, and specifically by Llambias. Just think what the fans would have been thinking if Mike himself had given monthly or bi-monthly statements on his vision for the club, and the progress made towards it.

That would have done a lot to keep the fans on his side, but we wonder if he understands the big mistake he did make, that had the fans go against him, over the last two weeks.

In case he doesn’t the mistake was siding with Dennis Wise, and maybe Derek Llambias in the struggle for who had final say at the club on transfers. That’s been his Achilles Heel in all of this – that and his complete inability to say anything to the fans and the players.

He has to take the responsibility for the mess the club is in right now, and unfortunately we don’t see this situation lifting until the club is finally sold, and we don’t think that will be as quick as fans would like.

We hope the club can be sold sooner rather than later – so we can make yet another start, presumably with yet another new manager.

It’s déjà vu all over again.

Comments welcome.

21 comments so far

  • HeronMag

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:34 AM

    Comment #1

    You’ve summed it up there Ed. The reason the fans have been scrambling for the tabloids and getting whipped up into a frenzy is solely because of the lack of communication regarding how the club was being operated.

    No communication with KK when he was in charge and no communication with the fans after Mort left. A disaster waiting to happen.

  • Ganiyu

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:38 AM

    Comment #2

    I once posted a comment on bad management and some lad told me to shut up.its not fair at all !

  • Ganiyu

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #3

    Cant Nufc employ qualified staff with professional ethics?
    Honestly changing of managers and owners wont solve the problem!

  • Timberhead Toon

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #4

    The longer this issue as regards our beloved club continues the more I am unsure of our best course of action. The planned protests in my mind contributed to the loss of 3 desperatley needed points as Hull where a team for the beating.

    The way I see things at the minute is there aint any decent managers worth their salt ever gonna touch our club at the moment and who can blame them with what happened to Roeder and Keegan both of whom for me got a rough deal. Allerdyce was shocking and we would have been in the Championship if he had of stayed.

    I dont think Ashley has done that bad a job 5 good signings (not sure about Xisco) and got rid of a lot of deadwood and Milner for 12 million was to good to pass up. But and this is my main gripe where has the strengthening been we really needed numbers during the window and it never happened. And we almost made a profit again in this window. Yes I believe Ashley IF he does sell will be leaving us in a better position than he found us.

    The press have been loving this as they are the one’s for me that have made this into the mess it is as they broke a false story that he had been sacked which wound everybody up and baying for blood (including myself. This in turn made everything very difficult in the board room as once the story broke then someone had to be seen to be backing down in a very PUBLIC manner and when you have the likes of Keegan and Lambias and Ashley that was always gonna be explosive. For me the the press will not rest until they turn us in to the next Leeds.

    Remembering that Ashley does not run the club but he may have made a mistake in the people he has appointed to do the job for him.

    Since Ashley has been in the country he has tried to sit down with Keegan. Yes Ashley was in the states and yes he was seen partying which was not the best move on his part but his comments where “weve had a spat with Kevin but it will be sorted out soon” (or words to that effect) so he felt it would be delt with by Lambias. For me Keegan has walked again but is said to be keen to rectify the problem as was Ashley during last week and maybe still so.

    The lack of communication from the club has also compounded the problems from the start of the transfer window there has been nothing from the club which has infuriated me and also a lot of fans.

    People are crying out for a Man City type take over but I dont these people will get board and up sticks leaving the club crippled with hugh wage bills and spiral down the league’s.

    At the minute we are in a no win situation no one would want the job, does anyone want to by the club as Ambani is know after Everton.

    I only hope there is a way forward Ashley to re-instate Keegan if that is still possible, I believe an apology to the fans from the Club mainly Lambias as I see him to be the real problem as Ashley does not run the club. With Wise and the rest of the mob working with Keegan.

  • lesh

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:47 AM

    Comment #5

    Depends on what you said Ganiyu!

    Must say, I feel a bit vindicated by the Journal’s and Ed’s articales!

    KOMMUNIKASHIN, that’s what it all comes down to….. betweem MA, Wise, Llambias, Jimanez; Kevin, the media and most of all, the fans.

    Important ot have the right personalities in place for it to work and I fully agree with Ed. There are couple in that nest that you’d have difficulty placing anywhere – other than with their own kind.

    Mr Ashley, be big enough to say you’ve blooped and your respect rating’ll go through the roof.

  • carl

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #6

    thats exactly it lads, mike seems a good man and has good plans for our club, BUT he has been incompetant in getting the correct staff in.wise and llambias have been the big problem, if ma had the balls to get rid he would get praise

  • carl

    Sep 15, 2008 at 10:55 AM

    Comment #7

    oh n gota say xisco and that nacho looked pants imo

  • Spyro

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:01 AM

    Comment #8

    Would you look at that, turns out the mail online were spewing crap again. The Shearer story was, yes you guessed it (or probably didn’t), bull****! No wonder they constantly fabricate stories about Newcastle United, the same people who slate the papers believe them, ridiculous.

  • Who is Derek Llambias?

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #9

    Ganiyu, I urge you again. ENGAGE YER BRAIN BEFORE YOU TYPE!!!!

  • Nick 69

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #10

    carl- i agree, i know it was only there first game but they did look sh*t especially xisco, probly too early to judge yet lyk

  • G

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #11

    I think the real cause of Newcastle Problems is Mike Ashley only does what he thinks is correct, without consulting the other experts relate to football. He only does what he personally believes is correct and does it his way.
    Football director structure is an example.

    Conclusion: he has the business sense to run a company but knows nothing about running a football club.

  • clinta

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #12

    So if everything doesn’t go exactly how we want it with the new owner or manager, will we push them out to then?

    afterall, we fans wanted a say, and an influence in our club, seems we’ve got that now, i’m wondering whether that’s a good thing though? a good thing for the success and survival of our club?

  • Ganiyu

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #13

    I dont care if kk or ashley jump into d lagoon.all i care is oba(ma country man) will b back to wreck da westham defense.cant wait 2 see da lad.
    Sorry guys im on mobile thats y i cant type spellings well.

  • samthecat

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #14

    A decent statement but way way too late, most of this should have been said a year ago.
    Also i for one never expected him to spend 100m every year, once again i think he is out of touch with fans opinion-the 20m he says he would have spent was fine but we didnt spend anything in the transfer window.
    Also bleating on about how much money he has put into the club-all of which he will get back when he sells it.
    Also i dont go around assaulting everyone i disagree with.

  • Bosck

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #15

    In some ways i do feel sorry for Mike Ashley, and i think it is sad that he is frightened to bring his family to a match as he is scared they may get attacked physically. surely that is not an image we should be happy with. peaceful protest is fine but violence is totally unnecessary and wrong here.

    On the other hand though, mike ashley could go a long way to boosting his respect with the fans again by listening to the fans and getting rid of wise and llambias. so in many ways it is his own stubbornness that is getting him in this situation. yes it would still take time to regain the fans trust but with keegan back in 100% control and newcastle playing as we did against united then that would happen over time.

    to me there is no logic in keeping wise and llambias on any longer, if he is selling the club they will be ousted by the next owners anyway so may as well go now, or if MA keeps the club then he should get rid of the pair and bring back keegan.

    it seems to me odd that MA cant see that it is as simple as that. many of the other things that he is doing for the club make a lot of sense but there is no way Dennis Wise has enough knowledge of top level football management to be more of an authority on it than KK. if the director of football had been someone like bobby robson, houllier (at a push) or someone with top experience at the highest level then i could understand/accept the structure more but wise has only ever managed in the championship/league 1.

    come on mike just have some sense and do what KK has said and the fans will soon be back on side with you.

    if we are to sell then we need someone not like abramovich or the man city lot, but someone with similar intentions to MA (despite his stubborness i do see where he is trying to take the club), potentially with a bit more cash, and importantly someone who is willing to listen to the fans…. not always do what they say as we have to admit as fans we are sometimes unrealistic, but at least listen. and finally if KK comes back then he must be given full control. if we are to continue with a director of football type position then they need to bring someone credible in to that position or get a top manager and again give them total control.

  • bowburnmag

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #16

    clinta – I think this is quite a unique situation. I don’t think it’s ground-breaking and I don’t think we’ll see the likes again in a big hurry. Let’s hope not. The more upfront the new owners are early doors and backing up their words with actions, the more they will earn the trust of supporters. That’s been the poision in this potion.

  • carl

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:26 AM

    Comment #17

    agree that his plan was good and yes 20mil a season is enough to get us places IF WE ALREADY HAD A STRONG,DESCENT SQUAD WHO WERE A TOP HALF TEAM! but no mike, u spent nothing and didnt even get the cover we need! if we end up srapping for relegation it is ma to blame as he appointed those idiots and let them ruin our club

  • Spyro

    Sep 15, 2008 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #18

    Ed take KK down from the banner

  • Paul

    Sep 15, 2008 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #19

    They actually can’t communicate alot about the Keegan situation as Keegan is taking the club to court over the compo he beleives that he is owed for walking out. Therefore it is “sub judice” (under judicial consideration). It will all come out in the court case.

  • xfer

    Sep 15, 2008 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #20

    I agree, the club’s signings, board or KK, have been brilliant. The players sold were justifiable. The only problem with the squad is its depth, and possibly the presence of Ameobi and Smith.

  • DT

    Sep 15, 2008 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #21

    Funny how clear it is with hindsight once the adrenaline goes away.

    Great piece by Luke Edwards in the Journal.


    It wouldn’t have happened of Mort hadn’t gone back to being a lawyer.

    I’m sorry for Ashley, but he has to carry the can for relying on people who weren’t up to it, (and in some cases seem to vicious and dishonest!)

    No Owner; no manager; no fit full-backs; no captain (soon); no points again Hull, and precious little hope!

    What a mess. What a tragedy!


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