Bad news last night at the Newcastle vs Sunderland Reserve team game at St. James’ Park, when some Sports Direct advertising hoardings were torn down by Newcastle fans.
Newcastle fans with bits of Sports Direct signs
On a day when the Newcastle club released stellar financial results, and unveiled the extremely savvy way in which they are running the club financially, this is not good news.
And there’s no reason why St. James Park cannot keep being called St. James’ Park by the fans, and Derek LLambias even revealed yesterday that’s what owner Mike Ashley still calls the famous Stadium.
Newcastle need the revenues of around £10M/year, and LLambias had said that will help buy a top player every year for the club.
The Newcastle City Council are still calling it St. James Park too, so it will remain the standard name, since it’s name will change in the years ahead continually, as companies pay for their name to be associated with the Stadium.
The only common name of the ground will remain as St. James’ Park, as it has been for 120 years.
Newcastle supporters tore down the Sports Direct signs at the ground during the game, and Northumbria Police are looking into the matter.
A tweet on Sunderland’s official Twitter feed read as follows during the game:
“Newcastle fans are tearing down the Sports Direct signs around the ground and throwing them onto the pitch.”
The referee even had to halt play and the players took a break, as officials tried to restore some order, before play resumed, but this will be headlines today around the country, and they do not portray the fans at their best – and that’s not good.
A spokesman for Northumbria Police said the following last night:
“We were made aware of damage to signage within the Newcastle United stadium and officers are making inquiries to ascertain who caused the damage”.
Mike Ashley is not going to change his direction on this, and certainly our revenues of around £88M are way behind clubs we were competing with only a few years ago.
Clubs like the two Manchester clubs, Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur have left us behind financially, with their revenues substantially more than Newcastle’s are, and we are now trying to catch up.
As an example Manchester United revenues are around £330M, and are over four times those of Newcastle.
And we can still all call it St. James Park in any case.
Newcastle’s Reserves got a late equaliser in a 3-3 draw with the local rivals – now where have I heard that one before?