There was good reason to have the sale of Newcastle United completed by mid-December at the latest, although it now looks to be delayed by as much as 4 weeks beyond that date.
Michael Owen – could leave club in January
One reason is to get our act together for the January transfer market. But if a new manager is brought in now, he will have no time at all to assess the squad, and would have to take input from Chris Hughton, Dennis Wise. Joe Kinnear and others – even if the last two are no longer at the club
Not a good situation.
The other reason is that we have players whose contracts run out in the summer, and these include our captain Michael Owen, and local goalkeeper Steve Harper. Come January other clubs can talk to them, and the players can then sign pre-contract agreements and move in the summer as free agents, and could even move for small fees in January, if Newcastle elects to do that (whoever Newcastle is in that sentence).
Michael Owen will be linked with all types of teams every day, if his situation is not resolved before the beginning of January, and it looks almost certain now that it cannot be.
And even if Michael would have been willing to stay at Newcastle, and he certainly made those noises when Keegan was at the club, he will now be inundated with lucrative offers from clubs who can buy him for nothing in the summer, and for a minimal fee – maybe £5M in January. Something Newcastle wanted to avoid.
Michael has already been linked with a move to Chelsea, but Kinnear does not think that Luiz Felipe Scolari will be alone in his interest, and Joe expects plenty of bids to flow into the club very soon for Owen.
And what are the Newcastle Board doing about all of this? Nothing that we can see, as they are solely concentrating on selling the club, and Joe seems to be running the club all on his own, and has been since he came.
Joe said yesterday:
“Of course, it’s understandable that other clubs are interested,” “He’s a 28-year-old who has bags of ability and can score goals so there must be dozens who want him.”
“He will be spoilt for choice. I think Michael is probably in the best position, better than the position the club are in. Michael can’t lose.”
“I know what I would say to him if I keep the job – ‘Stay here’. But I have no idea who may come in.” “Who’s to say it won’t be Manchester United, Liverpool…anybody.”
The terrible situation the Newcastle club finds itself in, is that we cannot even make Michael a contract offer, because we are waiting for new owners to come in, who will likely bring in a new manager. So we cannot even tell Michael much at all about what he can expect if he stays at the Newcastle club.
This is hardly Michael’s fault, but complete incompetence of the Newcastle Board, who we were told yesterday do still exist – because they are still drawing their salaries – but you could have fooled us.
You really have to try very very hard to mess up a situation as much as the Board has over these last few months – a lot of effort had to go into it (yes that’s cynicism).
It’s called being absoutely and completely incompetent, and the only man who seems to be worried about all of this is Joe Kinnear. Of course since Mike Ashley and the Newcastle board never say anything to the fans, and it seems to Joe either, we have no idea what they are thinking, which only makes things worse.
And since Newcastle right now is Joe Kinnear, it’s a terrible situation that Joe finds himself in, because he himself may not even be at the club after mid-January. You cannot make this stuff up – it’s so bad -and it’s hard to imagine how the situation has come down to this.
What a complete and utter mess we’re in, at least as far as the transfer season is concerned.
Please sell the club quickly Mike Ashley – and even do the unthinkable and reduce your price, if that will get a quicker sale of our club.