We often laugh a little when we use the phrase “big club”, because exactly what that means is open to interpretation on all different levels.
Mike Ashley – got Newcastle on the right track
Before Roman Abramovich took over Chelsea back in the summer of 2003, fans wouldn’t have called Chelsea a big club, but they were one, as soon as the Russian Billionaire took over.
The same can be said about Manchester City, since Sheikh Mansour took over the club in August of 2008.
So if you have an owner who is willing to invest huge amounts of money into a club, then they are big in the sense they can afford the best players.
But since Romain took over Chelsea, it’s all been a little ridiculous the way owners have been allowed to buy new teams essentially, with no financial restrictions on them.
And thus the introduction of the Financial Fair Play rules, by UEFA, and we are hoping they will level the playing field so to speak, because clubs are now being forced to balance their books, as the rules come into effect over the couple of years.
Newcastle have a Billionaire owner in Mike Ashley, but Mike is unwilling to pour untold amounts of money into Newcastle’s coffers, and instead, over the last three years has built Newcastle into a very well run club, both on the field and financially.
And it seems the way ahead for Newcastle is to start being in the Premier League top six, and qualify for European competition every season, and hopefully reach the Champions League.
Once a club is part of the Champions League scene, they automatically become a “bigger” club, because of their increased visibility and publicity, and the finances will take care of themselves, with an addition £30M coming into the coffers.
And it would appear that owner Mike Ashley will run Newcastle as a non-profit organization, so the profits will be poured back into the club for new players and new facilities, and that’s what Managing Director Derek LLambias has already said a few times.
One thing going for Newcastle is that their fan-base is one of the best in the world in terms of support – fanatical support to be exact – and Newcastle is a great place to live and play football, and that always helps.
But the way ahead now is that we may be able to sell say one top player every summer, to fill the Newcastle coffers, but we must keep signing top new players every summer, and steadily increase the competence and ability of the squad.
If Newcastle can do that over the next couple of years, we will be back to being called a big club again, with 52,000 home gates, so performance on the field becomes of paramount importance.
And then the next step is some investment – so that St. James’ Park can hold 60,000 fans, just like at Arsenal’s Emirates stadium – and it will be sold out for every home game.
But we are getting ahead of ourselves, the main point is we cannot keep selling our top players to other big clubs, otherwise we’ll never become a big club like them.
Performance on the field is now what matters most of all.
And we’d also be very surprised if the Newcastle hierarchy didn’t agree with that.
Howay The Lads!!