We don’t think either party came out of the tribunal yesterday looking too good, but the findings of the Premier League tribunal were just a damming indictment of Mike Ashley and his reign as Newcastle owner.
Mike Ashley – has brought shame on Newcastle and himself
And as we have said many times before we think this will extend the adverse public’s view of Ashley, to how he manages his Sports Direct business, as it exposes some of his dubious business tactics and personal ethics.
When Mike Ashley appointed Dennis Wise as Director Of Football in late January, 2008, fans were a little bemused as to who was ultimately responsible for players coming and going at the club.
We had thought the structure was OK as long as Kevin had the final say on all things to do with player transfers.
And last year, then Newcastle Chairman Chris Mort, was first to make the statement that Kevin was ultimately responsible for who comes and goes at the club.
In a February interview on Newcastle TV, Dennis Wise himself also stated that, and added he was only going to help Kevin get players in he wanted, and have him look at some other players he had scouted – but he (Kevin) was the ultimate decision maker.
But yesterday, one of the major things the tribunal made clear was that essentially Mike and his cohorts were simply lying about the role of Wise, to the fans, to Kevin Keegan and to anybody else who was listening.
The panel, was comprised of Philip Havers QC, Lord Pannick QC and Kenneth Merrett, and they noted in their findings the Newcastle club repeatedly lied about Keegan’s responsibilities with regard to selling players – the crux of the case – in interviews in independent and official club publications.
The tribunal talked about the club’s claim:
“that they were nothing more than an exercise in public relations carried out so as not to undermine Mr Keegan’s position”,
and they added:
“we do not understand why the club could not set out publicly and truthfully what they maintain was the true position or explain its actions to Keegan.
That’s because they seem a devious lot, and they have continued over the last 13 months, to show a complete disdain and disrespect to the fans of Newcastle United.
They continue to do that to this day, refusing to even comment on the decision on the official web-site yesterday.
Keegan claimed he had been promised the “final say” on all transfers, but the tribunal said it was “blindingly obvious” this was not the case.
So Ashley and his cohorts have dragged the name of the proud Newcastle club once again through the mud.
The best ting this man can do now is to sell up quickly and leave the club, which he has completely shamed and shattered over the last year.
There should be a law against somebody like Ashley ever being allowed to run a football club like Newcastle United.
Oh, and now we are a second division club under his very dubious leadership – almost forgot about that.