Ashley Wants To Watch Games Again At St. James’ Park


The Mirror is reporting today that Mike Ashley is ready to make a return to watch games at St James’ Park.

Mike Ashley – in happier times at St. James’ Park

The report, which is hardly surprising, suggests that Mike is ready to end his Tyneside exile after calling a temporary halt on his bid to sell the famous Tyneside club to potential American buyers.

The Mirror is reporting that he would like to attend the Premier League home game with West Ham on January 10th, as a means of seeing how he will be accepted by the Newcastle fans.

Ashley has installed Joe Kinnear as manager through the end of this season, and that has given just a little bit of stability on Tyneside. And there is news today that Dennis Wise may be leaving Newcastle, which will probably be well accepted by the Newcastle faithful, even though Dennis has brought some excellent players to the club this year, to be fair.

But independent of that is that Mike now agrees that manager Joe Kinnear has to have all the say on who comes and goes at the club, and we think Joe has talked to Mike and explained why that has to be the way things work.

Joe seems a straight shooter and seems to have talked some sense into the Newcastle Board, and he is also keen to see more harmony on Tyneside. Poor Joe has had to do his work with the players in this political whirlwind that has existed since Kevin Keegan walked out on the club in early September.

But the atmosphere that ha surrounded our club since early September can hardly be conducive to good performances, let’s be honest about that.

We are less than happy this morning with our draw yesterday, than we were immediately after the game, and we just have to start winning games, after 3 draws in a row. A win is 3 times as good as a draw as far as points go!

Joe Kinnear talked about the state of affairs at the Newcastle club:

“I think he will come back to games and I’d like to think he’d get a good reception from supporters and that everyone will just concentrate on the football.”

“A lot of it in my opinion could have been sorted out a lot more amicably. But I’d like to think that if we have a good FA Cup run and get ourselves in the top 10, then I think he’d be accepted.”

“In my discussions with him he’s suggested he might be able to come back to games in future and I said to him ‘why not come up here?’.”

“He’s definitely keeping the club as it is now until the end of the season. I said to him I’m sure once you’ve invested and we’re up and running and you’ve sorted out all your problems around the club, it’s probably your time to get a pat on the back.”

“I said ‘if I was you I’d still come up and bring your kids up’. He said once we get it up and running and everything dies down and we’re running it as a club without any aggravation, he probably will do.”

The other good news coming out over the last couple of days, is that Mike will dig into his pockets to bring more players into the club in January. That means Newcastle will not just rely on money generated by Kinnear selling current players in the squad.  But that came from Kinnear and nobody from the Board has confirmed that.

There are some things Mike should look at doing to make the club better in its operations:

  • Make sure Dennis Wise is not at the club, or if he is staying, that he fully accepts that only Joe is in charge of players coming and going
  • Make it plain that Joe Kinnear is getting some transfer funds to bring in some players this January, to strengthen our squad, which is just too small for the Premier league, and we’ve proved that since September
  • Replace Derek Llambias with somebody who is at least competent in running a football club.
    It would be great to have Chris Mort back in the job, although Chris is a high flying lawyer, who put his career on hold to get Ashley off to a good start – and that’s what he did – but then Llambias came in and really messed things up.
    We still think the blow-up with KK would never have happened if Chris was still at the club in August.

There are still fans who hate the very site of Mike Ashley, and there is still a call to boycott anything that Mike’s businesses sell.

But we never thought the Keegan affair was directly Mike’s fault, other than he failed to clean it up when he got back from America, and that surprised us, and was Mike’s big and crucial mistake.

But if we want our club to be successful again we need to support the lads and our current manager Joe Kinnear, that’s what fans are for, after all.

Even if Joe wasn’t our first  choice as manager, or even if you dislike him, he’s our manager now – so let’s support him, because his heart is in the right place – and he’s doing the very best he can for the club, in very very difficult circumstances. Please give Joe a break.

Comments are very welcome – but please keep them civil but also let us know your point of view on all of this.

We know there are still strong feelings among many of Newcastle fans on all of this, and we’ll also start a vote as to whether Mike should come back to St. James’ Park to watch the home games.  Please register your vote – many thanks.

Howay The Lads!!



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43 comments so far

  • kenny g

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #1

    he needs to spend 20mil in january for me to even consider keeping my mouth shut in the stands

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  • magpie6699

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:36 AM

    Comment #2

    We all know that Mike Ashley has seriously screwed up in his handling of the KK / managerial set-up and has yet to invest heavily in players for the club. However, if the club cannot be sold for a time then we must let the existing team get on with the job of getting us away from relegation. Opinion is consistently divided on this blog about MA but I hope we don’t get the fools who give us a bad name posting their poison on here, threatening violence to Mike Ashley etc. – it is appalling to think that people would not allow him to attend matches.
    I understand the strength of feeling about him and the loss of KK and sympathise with the demonstrations then – but not the “Cockney Mafia” bigotry or the threats. I can go back to the “Sack the Board”, “Westwood is a pirate” etc. chants – but never was there any attempt at intimidation to stop attendance at the match. So come on, if MA does return to watch the match with his family, let’s just get on with it like adults. He already knows how a lot of NUFC supporters feel. He may yet be able to sell up when the time and price is right – great but who knows – on the other hand, maybe some major investment, reorganisation, and recognition of his earlier mistakes coupled with a big improvement in results and later appointment of a top manager MIGHT just rehabilitate him?

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  • Turkish Magpie

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #3

    20mil at least

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  • Knownowt

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #4

    You have once again referred to KK walking out despite the fact that Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger, Martin O Neil, Sir Bobby Robson, Alan Shearer and Roy Keane, to name but a few, have all commented that the circumstances were such that they wouldn’t have tolerated them. Perhaps KK being forced out would be a more accurate description and would provide less ammunition to the Keegan critics. Ironically, the conditions that Joe Kinnear is insisting on regarding the final say on incoming and outgoing transfers are only what KK wanted but was not given.

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  • NorthernPaul

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #5

    If Mike backtracks and releases a statement of his intent I would be willing to listen, and judge him after that.

    What are the chances of getting any comments from him though? That has been one of the biggest problems at the club recently.

    It looks like we are stuck with him though, as many of us suspected for a long time due to Kinnears press comments.

    If he had just come out and said what his intentions were in the first place then most of this hatred would have been avoided, as no one knew what to expect from him.

    It’s going to take a lot to get me back on his side, after the hurt he has caused the club.

    I’m not asking for a billion pounds worth of players. I just want to know the direction the club is taking, and timescales before we achieve that aim.

    As a side note, we have to avoid relegation first and that is definately going to need some investment in January. Will JK be backed in the transfer market? We will see……

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  • Sptifire

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:46 AM

    Comment #6

    WE are Geordies. We are big hearted and forgiving. Mike should make a public statement – his own words not those written by some weasel. Maybe do a phone in with Mick Lowes on Radio Newcastle. Say sorry. Make it clear what HE thinks and how he wants to go forward. I think he would be accepted back if he is big enough to say he screwed up. Christ we’ve all screwed up something at some time haven’t we?. And before anyone says I’m an Ashley lover. I was at the boycott. I was gutted over Keegan. I hate Wise and Lllambias as much as anyone. But we are in a very perilous state (relegation looms) and we need to be adult about this now or we lose the whole thing.

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  • waddle's mullet

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:47 AM

    Comment #7

    Keegan threw his toys out of the pram again. FACT!!

    Lets just get on with supporting our club and forget the past.

    Shephard was a lot worse and got away with it.

    so shut the f*(£ up and get on with getting behind the team.

    ahem!

    rant over

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  • Pete

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #8

    Unfortunatly no. And let’s be fair, can you possibly see something like that happen? The only solution to the current situation is new ownership. Before that happens we’re not going anywhere, at least not the right direction. At the moment, relegation seems increasingly possible.

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  • toon mad tom

    Nov 30, 2008 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #9

    as long as trashley will spend enough on players in january and denis wise is gone, i’ll be happy.

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  • SuperShearer

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:03 PM

    Comment #10

    Invest in the club by signing two to three, good players, in Jan. Give Owen a new contract and come out and admit that you handled KK in the wrong way. Show some form of humility and he can come back. None of the above will happen though and therefore I will not be pleased to see him at the ground.

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  • Andrew

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:06 PM

    Comment #11

    why “£20mil plus at least”?

    since when has chucking money at the problem been the answer? why not be done with it and get Freddy Shepherd back eh?

    someone said before that KK threw the toys out the pram, and that’s spot on. Mike Ashley OWNS the club, it’s his until he sells, which is very unlikely. let’s get behind the team, acknowledge that nowt’s going to change overnight and that we’re actually on the right track to rebuilding.

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  • Turkish Magpie

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:06 PM

    Comment #12

    things are still looking ok

    i’ve just figured we’re only 9 points behind Arsenal!

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  • GFH

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:12 PM

    Comment #13

    Sion Kearsey is going to be appointed the new chairman to replace Derek.

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  • Spyro

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:17 PM

    Comment #14

    He can come back if he addresses our squad issues in January.

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  • Partizan

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:18 PM

    Comment #15

    KK could have done the same but the problem with him was that he wasn’t a diplomat the way JK is now.
    In another word……SMOOTHTALKER

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  • Obafan

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:43 PM

    Comment #16

    Well I don’t know what to think about this. If Ashley really wants to return to the games, why not giving a public statement (something which he is very good at 😉 ).

    I just hope that the club moves forward again whether it is with Ashley or not, I don’t care. But if Ashley remains for the long haul then it has to be very clear to him that he needs to communicate to the players, the staff and the fans.

    And ppl pls stop about the whole KK saga, it is annoying to read those debates over and over again. We have to look forward and not get into the past.

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  • Marguerite

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #17

    GFH (13) Where have you got this info from? I presume you mean the guy from Kelso Asset Management ?

    As for Ashlehy, the trouble is he knows nowt about football and has employed the wrong people. Also, he may HAVE had sufficient money to buy Newcastle but he certainly hasn’t got big enough pockets to run the club.

    I fear for my team I really do.

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  • Nobby'sDad

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:56 PM

    Comment #18

    My approach in the past was to support Ashley and on this blog I always said ‘judge him at the end of the transfer window’ (Aug 08). Well the verdict to me was that we were shafted.

    The sale of Milner was described as ‘good business’. Well it might have been had we re-invested the money wisely. £5 million on Xisco – come on. There is no smoke without fire and I believe Ashley did try and sell Owen and I also doubt Owen was ever offered a new contract.

    Then there was the ‘demonstation’ after the Hull game – I watched events – no worse than anything aimed at Shepherd – and to be honest given KK had gone and our performance that day (plus inactivity in the transfer market) it was not unreasonable to be annoyed. Then Ashley declares ‘ I’m selling up, cannot go to games, love the Toon but my kids are in danger’.

    Does anyone really believe the events of that one afternoon prompted Ashley to sell a £300 million pound business?? He saw it was his opportunity to put the club on the market (something I now believe was ALWAYS his intention) AND how great for him – he could BLAME the fans!!

    To me it’s not insignificant that he’s trying to now ingratiate himself with the fans. Why? because all of us who have signed up for our season tickets for the next 2 years start to pay our direct debits in Feb 2009. I’ve got 3 tickets – but he’s not conning me again. I’m cancelling any payments (cos he’ll pocket that money) if we sell Owen and get only ‘loan deals’ in. I’ll renew in summer when things are clearer. I’d advise others to do the same…….oh and like someone has already commented I sick of Ashley speaking through Keith

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  • Nobby'sDad

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:57 PM

    Comment #19

    Harris and Joe Kinnear. Come out, state your intentions AND spend some cash on established players!!

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  • Terry Mac's Crossword

    Nov 30, 2008 at 12:58 PM

    Comment #20

    Peace and relative harmony would certainly help us pull away from the bottom of the EPL. This civil war crap is bad for the club.

    Worries me that some supporters would want anybody other than Ashley.

    Sat amongst the bereh fans yesterday. First time i’ve ever sat with opposition fans, wouldn’t recommend it. Having to sit and keep your emotions under wraps took away all the enjoyment, total head do-er. aaaaargh.

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  • BT9MAG

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #21

    spitfire – best comment of this thread…

    I honestly think that IF either Llambias or Ashley had come out with statements letting the fan’s know the situation straight after (or even better – during) the keegan debacle we’d never be in this mess!

    communication with the fans is massively important, as the lack of it builds up an ‘us and them’ mentality

    I think it was Utd111 who said it made him feel as if the board were saying “it’s our club, we can do what we like” … Very well put in my opinion!

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  • ObaMartins

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:08 PM

    Comment #22

    Kinnear talking about Ashley wrote >>I think he will come to games at St. James Park again, for sure. I would like to think that he will get a good reception and that everyone concentrates on football.<<If he gets his Head any further up Ashley’s Ass it will take a Team of Specialist Surgeons to get him Out….this is Getting Beyond Pathetic !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Stamford Toon

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #23

    I’m all in favour of MA staying. How anyone can say they will welcome him back only if he spends £20m is beyond me. I understand those who say the would like him to communicate al little more with us, but if he replaces Llambias with a communicator then that would do me.. Don’t forget that even if he gives JK money there is not guarantee that JK would be able to get the players he wants. The only thing that would be to our advantage would be the current economic position making some clubs afraid to spend. However that would not affect Man City.
    I hear Man U have debts of £850m, no way to run a club.

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  • Knownowt

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #24

    Nobby’s Dad. Comment 18 absolutely spot on. Someone commented that ‘we should forget the past.’ On the other hand we should always be aware of, and learn from history. I’m afraid I just don’t trust Ashley or his programmed puppets.

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  • zico martin

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:23 PM

    Comment #25

    he needs to get the communication right with the fans

    he needs to spend some money

    he needs to get rid of lambias and wise and get a chairman who cares about the club

    he needs to stop the penny pinching because who would want to sign for a tight arsed club

    simple really

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  • sirjasontoon

    Nov 30, 2008 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #26

    I knew he wouldn’t sell and would try and weasel back in..he should not be welcome at the club,him,wise and owl head have put us back years.

    20m in january what will that do when you have teams like spurs,villa,man city leaving us behind.

    Football is moving on Ashley is not rich enough to finance us properly and we are way behind many clubs that a few years ago we would have hammered.

    JK has steadied the ship but the football is awful to watch and is as fluid as quick drying cement.

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  • The Entertainers

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:29 PM

    Comment #27

    Well done Ed.

    I was hoping you would to a poll on this matter.
    There was some interesting comments leading up to the game yesterday.

    Look hes here for the immediate future, if hes willing to spend in Jan’ and do the right thing in the summer, whether that be sell up or bring in finacial muscle, then i can swollow my pride and except his return.

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  • ObaFan2

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #28

    Ashley is full of **it, his actions and statements only go to show his contempt for the paying customer…… us.

    I will always support my team and my club but I choose not to support my team’s owner. I personally gave him till September 1st and even before KK had left I realised Ashley was not supporting the first team and we were well under strength and Ashley was not helping the first team finantially.

    So why let JFK have total control (if this is true) and not KK????? It’s more BS if you ask me, dont trust the suits at this club!

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  • ObaFan2

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #29

    Looking at the poll it seems to me that Ashley has played you all for mugs! fickle bunch indeed.

    He’s stayed out of the way until the dust settles then makes his way back in……. he’s scum and you can’t see it, a devious manipulating typical piece of sh***.

    JFK as manager, he’s loosing us points nearly every game with poor decisions IMO.

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  • BT9MAG

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #30

    Obafan2 – Did he lose us points at Everton when we came back from 2:0 down? Or against Chelsea where our all out defence was the only hope for a result?

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  • ObaFan2

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:54 PM

    Comment #31

    BT9MAG, I said nearly every game……. a point at Chelsea should have been a bonus but the previous 2 games we dropped points…….

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  • Smeg_Head

    Nov 30, 2008 at 2:55 PM

    Comment #32

    Interesting how the new poll on Ashley is worded there. Yes he is fine to attend the home games but ultimately his reputaion is tarnished and I would not want him as owner for any longer than what was necessary. He had made it very clear that he was never going to invest heavily in newcastle united. I do not want a man with no ambition at the helm other than to keep newcastle in the league, this is not enough.

    We were crying out for stability after shepard and what we got was even worse. it was again manager after manager.

    I also do not like the way Kinnear Speaks about the keegan debacle. He is strongly on Ashley’s side when he should keep his mouth shut on that matter.

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  • zico martin

    Nov 30, 2008 at 3:05 PM

    Comment #33

    the thing is we’re grinding out draws in the games we might have lost before .
    but in the games we should win we’re also getting draws and dont seem to have what it takes to turn them into wins.
    we need more creativity in midfield

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  • Marty-TOON RISING

    Nov 30, 2008 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #34

    Who we gonna sell in January?????
    Cannot sell Smith as he is injured
    Maybe Shola can be sold along with
    Edgar and Viduka and maybe Butt

    If we only buy 4 playes we are still short of a few,
    gonna be a bad reaction i reckon.
    Hope MA spends 15-20 million,that will get us a lot if we buy like we did with Jonas n Collo

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  • Paul:D

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:13 PM

    Comment #35

    it is a fact – mike ashley has taken every toon fan for a mug
    it is a fact mike ashley speaks out of his ar$e
    it is a fact joe kinnear is incompetent
    it is a fact we are deep in the $hit
    it is a fact we need investment
    it is a fact wise and llambias have to go
    it is a afct mike ashley is 100 responsible for this situation no matter what ed says, he is the owner, therefore he has the power to overturn any decision amde buy anyone at the club
    it is a fact i am going to get ripped by all of the gullible fans who believe this tripe
    it is a afct whoever said jk was a smoothtalker is definitly right, takes a really smooth talker to go out and swear 52 tiems in 10 minutes after 5 seconds int he job
    it is a fact to allt he keegan haters that he did not throw his toys out the pram, because the only time sir alex, the manager of sunderland and a hater of nufc roy keane, would be if he was right
    it is a fact alan shearer woudl only lose his role as ambassador of the club for the sake of the keegan would only be for the right reasons
    it is a fact sir bobby robson talks sense
    it is a fact, we NEED keegan back asap
    it is a fact mike ashley is the only person who can guarentee us safety from relegation, as he is the one who can invest, sort the club out etc
    it is a fact if we are still in this situation when ashley attends games again, i for one will not be giving him a good reception
    and is that fat fcuk to the left in the photo a relative of ashley?? uncanny resembelence there 😉
    howay the lads

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  • GeordieDeb

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #36

    If he wants to come to games with his family that should be his prerogative — he does own the club after all!!
    I think he has been very naive at best, putting people in key positions ie Llambias who clearly are inexperienced and standing back and tolerating inept management and communication from those people ie Llambias. He should have stepped in much sooner to deal with the situation and replace him. As much as I despise Dennis Wise, always have since he was a sneaky little trouble maker as a player, he does seem to have done a reasonable job and if he was given a very tight brief I would even tolerate him staying as long as he didn’t meddle with anything to do with the first team unless he was asked to. Before I get an ear bashing yes I was there for the Hull game, yes I was incensed that KK was treated the way he was, but it’s in the past. We’ve got to make the best of it and if that means all pulling together we should do that. Who would have predicted the extent of the recession worldwide – loads of businesses going bust, banks home and abroad going bust. Lots of instability – hardly the best time to sell an unstable football club. Just get behing the club, not just the team as we need to utilise all of our support to make sure we help our club avoid relegation. We mightn’t like Ashley but he’s our only bet for the forseeable future – so him and his family should be able to come to the games with putting up with a load of cr*p from supporters

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  • Stamford Toon

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:37 PM

    Comment #37

    Paul;D. You appear to have a limited grasp of the english language and the meaning of words. I believe that what you should have been saying is ‘It is my opinion’ not as you did say ‘It is a fact’, but then perhaps you cannot understand the difference. There must be a good college around somewhere near you to help.

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  • Paul:D

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:40 PM

    Comment #38

    the only way of keeping up is resolving the situation, sackign those who need to be sacked, asking the players if they want keegan back, if they do, do watever it gets to get him, and making a public apology, none of which will happen cuz ashleys an arrogant bullshitting cockney w@nkstain whod eserves every little bitov $hit that gets thrown at him

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  • Paul:D

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #39

    stamford toon, it is clear its me that is not fluent with the english language, as i can use an important part of the english language known as sarcasm, u nto remember the statement released by the imcompetants in suits?

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  • Paul:D

    Nov 30, 2008 at 7:53 PM

    Comment #40

    and the only one of those statements which is my opinion and not a fact is that we need keegan back, but shearer would do to, or beardsly, or ketsabaia, ect

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