When Things Are Really Bad – Where’s the Opportunity?

It’s a statement you get to see in business schools – when things in business are really bad where’s the opportunity.

Chris Hughton took his opportunity

And it’s true not only in business but in life in general.

When things are really tough, there’s a big opportunity around somewhere.

And one great example of that is to go back to July 1st last year, when the Newcastle club was in complete disarray – let’s be honest.

We had no permanent manager and fans were clamoring for Alan Shearer to get the job, and we were all wondering who would take the training when the players returned.

Just go back for a moment and remember how bad things really were at that time – pretty bad right?.

And then not to the particular delight of  the Newcastle fans, owner Mike Ashley once again turned to Chris Hughton – who had already taken on the manager role twice before in the previous season.

The first time was after Kevin Keegan walked out at the club a year last September, and the second time was when Joe Kinnear had his heart problems in early February.

Both times Chris had come in. seemingly rather reluctantly, and had hardly performed well at all.

And then on April 1st – April Fool’s Day – Mike Ashley turned to Alan Shearer to save the club and we all thought we were saved.

But then the disaster actually took place, and we were relegated.

So when Chris took over last July, we were all waiting to see who the real new manager would be – because Chris was just the stand-in, and not a very good one at that.

The pre-season wasn’t a breeze, and to allay fears of impending disaster in ther Championship, we somehow managed to be taken apart 6-1 at Leyton Orient, of all places.

Then when the season started, the lads won five of their six games in August and we were suddenly top of the league – would you believe it?

Since then Chris has gone from strength to strength and this Londoner, who will take absolutely nothing for granted, and is low key and pragmatic has nevertheless transformed the Newcastle club.

So much so that Newcastle are are now actually making headlines for all the right reasons – what they are doing on the pitch – like the 6-1 win at home to Barnsley on Saturday.

Chris has the team 8 points clear at the top of the Championship, and things are so rosy on Tyneside, and Chris seemingly has performed a miracle.

Come to think about it – if you made the above story up – nobody would believe it, so it should be a good book to write for somebody, and it has an unlikely hero in Chris Hughton.

So the above is at the very least a good example in real life that when things seem at their lowest ebb, there’s an opportunity somewhere.

Howay The Lads!!

11 comments so far

  • will die for the toon army

    Mar 8, 2010 at 5:18 PM

    Comment #1

    All I believed in was that he was a patient man and he is flexible very good manger.

    Got what he wanted although he failed in what he really wtd in the transfer window.

  • Girth

    Mar 8, 2010 at 5:37 PM

    Comment #2

    moral of the story
    never listen to fans..

  • GeordieGerman

    Mar 8, 2010 at 5:48 PM

    Comment #3

    Got what he wanted although he failed in what he really wtd in the transfer window.”


  • will die for the toon army

    Mar 8, 2010 at 6:00 PM

    Comment #4

    He wanted Beckford and Kilgalon in the summer which he failed in bids but he had other choices in Williamson and Best. He didnt cry over split milk.

  • Bucks mag

    Mar 8, 2010 at 6:44 PM

    Comment #5

    Fair doos he missed on some targets, but I thought Routledge and Van Aanholt were very shrewd buys.

  • Mags

    Mar 8, 2010 at 7:34 PM

    Comment #6

    Yes Ed every credit to Chris Hughton for a sterling job.

    Bucks mag – Van Aanholt was only a short term (1 month) loan. If you saw young Kadar on Sat when he replaced Jose we have a very good lad of our own on the books.

  • G

    Mar 8, 2010 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #7

    A good point Mags, but Kadar’s relative inexperience, compared to VA playing loads at this level whilst at Coventry seemed to be the deciding factor, so I feel it was a good move, and not worth taking the risk on Kadar. After all, if he got a regular gig and performed badly 2 games in a row the toon fans would be on his back for good… seems us toon fans are a fickle lot when it comes to judging defenders.

  • xfer

    Mar 9, 2010 at 2:54 AM

    Comment #8

    Well said Ed… I wont have believed this back in July when someone told me the club has done so far thus far. I would have grabbed this opportunity with both my hands and legs!


    Mar 9, 2010 at 9:15 AM

    Comment #9

    To be perfectly honest the Toon are the very worst team ever and I believe that Administration is coming your way very soon. Ashley got fu*k all (money) and every toon player is wa*k and on high wages. If you’s haven’t noticed every Toon player is robbing Newcastle and if you’s don’t sort this out I wouldn’t be surprised if Newcastle folded and sold their team.

  • Davies

    Mar 9, 2010 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #10

    Whatever Mackem Man. It’ll be nice to swap leagues with your lot next season, once Agent Bruce has finished his job.

  • Sav

    Mar 9, 2010 at 12:40 PM

    Comment #11

    Fair enough. But 3 month into the new Prem season (assuming etc.) and we are doing badly on the back of a stingy ‘Sports Direct’ style transfer endeavour and we’ll hear wailing and gnashing of teeth again. As you say, Ed, he’s failed twice and succeeded once.


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