Laughing Stock Newcastle Now In Dire Straights

Not only are Newcastle getting to be in dire straights as far as their preparation for next season goes, but we are again the laughing stock of the land.


Ashley and Llambias – making Newcastle a laughing stock

The last stupid action Mike and his cohorts at Newcastle did yesterday, was to put the club up for sale, and asked interested parties to contact Newcastle by email to their admin ID.

We would think top potential investors in the Middle East were not amused.  Not surprisingly there have been thousands of emails – and as you would expect quite a few from jubilant Sunderland supporters.

But this is just another sign that Mike Ashley just doesn’t get it – and never has.

He may be the greatest businessman in the world running Sports Direct,  but he’s been worse than a business novice at the way he has tried to run Newcastle. It’s all been very embarrassing.

It’s hard to think how any owner could have done worse in his two years at the club, especially the last 10 months where he’s stumbled from one critical mistake to the next.

And we see a number of former players attached to the club are speaking out in hopes of getting Mike to see some sense, as the club seems to be in a death spiral, and the longer it goes on the more difficult it will be to recover from.  If things don’t get fixed rather quickly we could even kiss goodbye to the Championship next season – it’s that serious.

Rob Lee came out yesterday, and put out his case for Shearer as manager at Newcastle.

This is what Rob said:

“This is the first time I’ve been back up to Newcastle since they were relegated and it’s depressing.” “I’m devastated for the fans, but the club has been in decline for some time.”

“This has been coming. It didn’t just happen overnight.” ““The table doesn’t lie, they were one of the three worst teams in the league and the warning signs have been there for a few years now.”

They just weren’t heeded by those who could have done something about it earlier.” “Now we have to pick ourselves up and try to get back into the Premier League as quickly as possible. As far as I’m concerned there is only one man for the job – Alan Shearer.”

“He reminds me very much of the Kevin Keegan situation back in 1992. He came and lifted the club off its knees.” He brought in a lot of excellent players, the sort of players Newcastle wouldn’t haven’t been able to attract if it wasn’t him. That is what Alan will do.”

“Hopefully the owners will see sense and put him in charge to run the club how he wants. He needs to be able to buy some players the club can be proud of.”

It’s hard to know what Mike’s thinking is, and since he doesn’t talk to the press we just have to surmise, but his actions since relegation have been bizarre to say the least, and he’s now making Newcastle a laughing stock.

We notice West Ham was bought yesterday for £100M, and there wasn’t the soap opera that went on at that club, was there?

Lee continued:

“The guy is a legend and he is the only man who could come in after relegation and give everyone hope again.”

“If Newcastle don’t want him I’m sure he’ll go and manage elsewhere because he’s got the bug now, I think he wants to be a manager and I think he’ll be a very good one and hopefully it’ll be at Newcastle.

“It should be a natural progression but sometimes things are not meant to be.” Hopefully everyone will see sense, they can work something out and put him in charge and the club can go forward.

“Until the situation is sorted out by the owner the club is going to stay in a bit of a limbo.’’

We just have to hope for good news but there are 74 days from the last game of last season and the first game in the Championship on August 8th.  16 days have gone by with the club in a worse mess now than we were on the day we were relegated, and that was quite traumatic.

Not one player has been sold and not one player has been brought in, and the players at the club don’t know if they are coming or going, but most will think now – they are going.

It’s all so sad.

Comments welcome.

102 comments so far

  • Toon Graeme

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #1

    Ed – its a joke mate and its not funny at all!

    The clock is ticking to training starting on July 1st.

    I do think that with Shearer being on the payroll til end of June we will start to see some movement with players being shipped out and hopefully in.

    I read Oba’s I want to stay statement as a “if you want me bid high” call. But Im synical and even more so at this current time.

  • lesh

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #2

    Yes Ed, despite his public apology to all concerned, he’s repeating his mistakes:

    Players being forced to living in a vacuum being treat like goods in his shop
    Fans completely exlcuded from information
    Shearer being treat like dirt
    No apparent management of the day-to-day playing side of the club:
    The first team up for sale – despite their wishes
    Players we need to keep drifting to the end of their contracts
    No apparent management of front ofice functions (eg the admin@nufc) email intended to tempt buyers

    The man is manifesting himself as a complet oaf and the sooner he gets out, the better for all concerned!
    and the list could go on and on and on.

  • estechco

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #3

    I think we can now see why Mike likes to keep a low profile?

    The guy is a complete ee-jit and seems to have left the clubs website in the hands of a five year old.

    “Apply via“…you couldn’t make it up!

  • estechco

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:29 AM

    Comment #4

    On a more serious note, I would like to see Oba loaned out for a season on the assumption that we might bounce straight back up. It would it take his salary of the wage bill, without losing the player totally. If we fail to do so, then we could always sell him then?

  • reetpetite

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:33 AM

    Comment #5

    Dear Sirs

    I am writing to make a formal enquiry regarding the sale of Newcastle United Football Club.

    I understand the asking price has, at this time, been set at £100m. As part of the due diligence process I would like to request a copy of the latest audited accounts along with a basic indication of the club’s debt. Would the debt also be sold with the club or retained by the current owner, as I am sure you will understand that this is likely to have a large influence on the valuation placed upon the club.

    If the debt is to be sold with the club I would like to offer a revised valuation of £5.00. Unfortunately however at present I only have £0.80 in spare change and an open packet of peanuts purchased for £1.50, which I now value at £1.20. This leaves me needing to raise £3.00 before I am prepared to make a full formal offer for the club, although if possible I would like to start the due diligence process immediately, as I have texted Dave who I drink with down at the plough on Thursdays to see if he has £3.00 he can lend me. He’s said he’d like to split the club 50/50 if he does give me the cash, which does seem a fair offer as he is contribution 60% of the purchase price, however, I would like to have full overall control so that I can change the shirts to have a genuine ‘barcode’ design. I was toying with pink and blue stripes, but Colin mentioned that if we were going to follow Mike’s clever plan to wear the shirt and win the fans over we’d look a bit like nancy boys, so I have decided to go with the barcode plan instead. That way when the players run out of the tunnel, the announcer (it might be wise to employ someone from Tesco for their relevant experience) can scan the players shirt which will automatically announce the name of the player over the loud-speaker system. I don’t know if you already have good speakers in the stadium, but I looked on ebay and there is an alba micro system with a cd player and 2 tape decks going for £7:50. I would appreciate a quick reply so that I can bid on behalf of NUFC as there is only 13 hours remaining and the next one is a Sony going for £10.00 on ‘buy it now’ and I don’t know if we will be able to afford that.

    I would appreciate a quick response as I have also been offered an 80% stake in Darlington FC and I won’t even have to give them my peanuts.

    Yours faithfully

  • BenjiToon

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:37 AM

    Comment #6

    This is one of the most depressing days in my 33 year history of supporting the Toon. We have been laughed at and ridiculed in the national press time and again…

    …but on many of those occassions we were a tope flight club, with at least a 1 or 2 cracking players and a lot of local pride. Misguided managers or chairman, but a club you still felt proud to support.

    I remain a proud Geordie.
    I remain a proud member of the Toon Army.
    But I have no answer to the press jibes today.
    My club has become a farce of magnificent proportions.

    Sad, sad, sad.

  • lesh

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #7

    reetpetite // Jun 9, 2009 at 10:33 AM,

    …..Have some decency man; the situation’s beyond the laughing stage for the very frustrated and disillusioned supporter of Newcastle United.

    Might I respectfully suggest that if you’re unable to say anything constructive, then please do not contribute to the site!

  • Angryman the Angry fan

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:49 AM

    Comment #8

    Its been coming for 2 years!!
    The bloke has made an arse of things from day one, and anyone with the tiniest bit of savvie could see it from a country mile!!

    I mean, for god sake, afiling to do due dilligence on a 130 million pound investment?? Says it all….
    Mike Cashley is nothing more than a Cock ney chancer and he has the business accumen of my five year old daughter, whom by the way is currently on the gifted and telanted register in northumberland and whom I would rather entrust the runningof my bleoved footbal club to than the current moronic incumbents!!

    i know what will come back now of stardust and the like, he cant be that bad, look at his sports direct EMPIRE…..right place at the right time, thats all!!!!

  • gibbotwg

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #9

    This is my offer to the board!! lol. What do you guys think?

    Dear Ashley

    I am offering £10 for newcastle united football club, as i feel this is the maximum amount of money you deserve for the way you have run the club. Your decision making resembles that of the 5 year old, you sell our best players for minimal prices and then do not reinvest the money into new players of equal quality, and put the money in your own kitty, you are currently leaving the club in limbo with pre-season training soon to begin, and no manager in place, during one of the most important periods of the clubs famous history. You are completely to blame for the clubs recent demise, please leave quickly!

    Yours sincerely Newcastle fan.

    Has anyone else made any offers

  • ToonRich

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:58 AM

    Comment #10

    Ed, dont take my comments personally as I really enjoy your blogs…however could you perhaps stop leading us astray regarding topics outside of the club. By this I mean your comments re: West Hams sale – They werent up for sale in the same manner that we are, therefore I dont see the need to keep telling us they were sold!! When infact their owners debts have been taken over by a parent company, meaning they take over WHU as part of the deal. No external sale of my knowledge happened, correct me if I’m wrong 😉

    I hope we hear something today, this silence is torture 🙁

  • Mags

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:58 AM

    Comment #11

    So we are a laughing stock again – what is new?Newspaper reporters, tv, media in general, opposition fans can all laugh as much as they want, they are all totally irrelevent.

    At this moment in time I am not remotely interested in anything they have to say. My sole concern is what is going to happen to my beloved Newcastle United FC.

    Our owner is a suicidal liability and as fans, we having to stand by and watch this nightmare unfold.

    I can only hope and pray that just around the corner, there is someone who will purchase our club and bring some desperately needed stability.

    Time is of the essence.

  • ian

    Jun 9, 2009 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #12

    I get tired of hearing Shearer’s name, I do not think he is the answer full stop, he may be if someone with a big budget jumps in, but say for instance it doesnt sell, which would you rather have next season, JK or Roeder or similar managing with strikers Martins, Carroll, Lovenkrands and Nile Ranger, or Shearer managing who has taken a chunk of the budget and now have strikers Ameobi, Nile Ranger, Carroll and another unknown??

    I would rather see £2m of a limited budget subsidise a quality player as pay for a big name unproven manager.

    A crap manager with superb players may get up, but an excellent manager with cheap poor players will not.

  • Macas35

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:01 AM

    Comment #13

    The curly wurly one was the funniest

  • Ericles

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #14

    According to the latest Chronicle an offer for due diligence has come from a group based in Singapore. Apparently they wish to have Shearer as manager. I hope this is on the level. I would not like to think this outfit is called Raffles!

  • darrowb1

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #16

    What is even more of a joke is the offers that he has got for the club and how he is trying to sell it

    Also i have heard today that birmingham want Edgar however this is only paper talk

  • Toon Graeme

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #17

    Batty – thanks for the link mate.

    Maybe they make a condition of the sale that Shearer is on board – which they can do – having listened to Keith Harris on BBC web link on Sunday.

    Could this be the news that starts the ball rolling.

    I hope it is confirmed by the club re this and isnt just paper talk – then again the Chornicle and Journal are nearly always on the money – well since Anal Oliver left anyway.

  • lesh

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #18

    re the Singapore connection and the sentence that “It has links with existing football businesses, including a current Premier League” .

    Links with more than one club are surely not permissable?

  • Rodzilla

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #19

    One of the things I just can’t get mi heed rund, is how on earth the club can seem like an attractive asset to prospective buyers when we ‘seemingly’ have no manager and the whole squad is up for sale.

    Even though we’re now in the 2nd division most people know it’s not where we belong, but it’s where we ARE. 100m IS expensive for a ‘Championship’ club – and 100m for a Championship’ club that could potentially have no players by the time it’s bought is daylight robbery!

    I can only hope there’s a LOT more going on behind closed doors, because this honestly seems ludicrous beyond all comprehension.

  • newcastle29

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #20

    links!! not shares or ownership.

  • laz

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #21

    Does anyone think that getting a new manager is secondary to getting rid of this cockney idiot and his entire entourage. New owners and then concentrate on the management. Hope the link that Batty provided comes off, I could do with cheering up.


    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #22

    Guys, I think that singapore based company is the same guy that tried buying us last time?

    Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communications is based in Singapore and he was interested last time when the club was up for 250m. he’s the worlds 6th richest man, This is just me putting 2 + 2 together though and there’s no quotes or scources.


    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:27 AM

    Comment #23

    Sorry i’m way off the wark…. that Anil chap isn’t based in singapore.

    Singapore-based global investment company Profitable Group, which has former England footballer Steve McMahon as a director ,

  • Johno Toon

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:30 AM

    Comment #24

    Hopefull this thing will start picking up pace and there is a concrete offer by the end of the week

  • punk skunk...

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #25

    No laughin’ gannen on roond here!..

  • NorthernPaul

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #26

    I’m actually very worried about the future of the club now.

    No one will want to buy it. Then what?

  • HalftimeBovril

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:35 AM

    Comment #27


    Wasn’t S McMahon spotted at a game a while ago amidst rumours that the group he was representing were interested in the club back then. Sounds viable that theses then are the same people

  • Toon Graeme

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:36 AM

    Comment #28

    NOrthern Paul –

    We have got to get rid of this fat P*ck and his voicless Hobbit.

    Weve got to cling onto hope that we can get out of this mess and get things on track before 1st July.

    We need a change around in fortunes (not money) and get back to what we miss – goals and wins.

  • Toon Graeme

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #29

    Halftime Bovril – its was in the chronicle come to mention it and he said it was about getting the toon brand global in that neck of the woods.

    I hope this is not 2 + 2 = 24.7532.

    I’ll watch this but wont hold my breath.

  • ian

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #30

    Rodzilla, I agree, plus there are liabilities with the likes of Barton’s and Xisco’s contracts, I havent a figure but the total contract liabilities could be up around £50m or more (the ones you dont want).

    So it may be £150m!!! Plus as you say then you have to buy the remaining players needed!!

    If I were Ashley I would grow a brain and see Freddy, offer to keep a silent partner share with no liability but no input to the running of the club, if Freddy gets him back up, which he is capable of as they have done it before, then Ashley recoups some of his losses by selling his share in a flotation of the business in the premiership, otherwise this could just get worse and worse for him.

    Then Ashley can sit in the stadium and watch us winning for once, he may even get the bug and stay part of it, he has enough to run without this and he may just get on with Freddy and co.

  • Ericles

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #31

    Mags sums it up really. It reminds me of a Mank U supporting kid who told me once that if NUFC were top he would support us. Guess what I told him and his dad to do with their lollipops. We are being kept in the dark deliberately. It is just another aspect of how fat Ashley deals with people and things. As for the press – bon journo arse-olo.

  • Rangerman

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #32

    McMahon was over here last time but it wasn’t to buy the club, it was to look at ways of making Newcastle’s brand better know throughout asia.

  • Micky Toon

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:46 AM

    Comment #33

    The profit group have already been in touch with us. From August, last year –,19528,11678_3945699,00.html

    They are either interested in us or it’s just rumour mongers putting an old story with a new twist into the news.

  • Micky Toon

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #34

    ian – I was one of the people who were willing to give Ashley a chance. I now want him as far away from NUFC as is physically possible. To say Fat Fred would be a silent partner is a bit of a big ask. Do you think he would keep quiet over any talks Ashley had with him? He can’t stand Ashley and would love to get one over on him.

  • Rangerman

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #35

    ian – Freddie Fletcher was the main drive in getting the club up last time, that and spending plenty of money which we don’t have now.

    How exactly is Shepherd going to get us up?


    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #36

    It’s a breaking news story from the Journal so I suspect the actually have something to back it up! if it was a ret top I would’nt believe a single word but the journal actually say that the company based in singapore have made it OFFICIAL that they’re interested.


    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #37

    Rod, I think 100mil is cheap at half the price.
    Newcastle is a top premiership club man. The mackems are a ccc side. We are only in the ccc because of fma.

  • reetpetite

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #38

    What i have heard this morning is that Ashley will still struggle to sell at his knock down price. Because relegation clauses werent added to players contracts the club will be running at a massive loss every week after players wages are paid. No business man in there right mind would take over the club knowing that there 100 million investment will start witteling away from day one. If these high earners(who all seem to be pledging there future to the club) cant be shifted Mike is going to struggle to sell.

    I must point out that about 3 months ago i said that rumours doing the rounds at the time were that Ashley would cut his losses and more or less give the club away. Those same people said he had had enough and w3anted out. I was shot down in flames for my comments and told i to bugger off. I wont hold my breath for an apology.

    oh, and unfortunatly it looks like owen could be off to spurs to partner rvn.

  • Rangerman

    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:51 AM

    Comment #39

    £100 million is cheap, you’re getting a debt free club even if it is running at a loss, a large fan base and a 52,000 seater stadium thrown in.


    Jun 9, 2009 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #40

    “A FAR Eastern group has officially declared an interest in taking over Newcastle United.

    The news comes a day after Toon owner Mike Ashley put the club up for sale for £100m and invited people to e-mail in with bids.

    The organisation, which is based in Singapore, has already said it intends to keep Alan Shearer on as manager if the move is successful.

    It has links with existing football businesses, including a current Premier League club, as well as banking, property and legal services.

    A high-profile football figure has been recruited to spearhead the takeover attempt for the group, which was established in the 1980s.”

    it must be the profitable group with Steve McMahon as look at the last paragraph!


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