There’s certainly not much love lost between Mike Ashley and Alan Shearer, we know that, and Alan Shearer famously wanted £20M to spend in the summer of 2009, after we had just been relegated – and that with the revenues to be cut by about two thirds by being in the Championship and out of the Premier League.
Alan Shearer puts blame at Mike Ashley’s door
Anybody who has run a business will know that request by Shearer was simply ridiculous – and that’s being kind, but on the other hand Mike isn’t exactly loose with the cash he has – at least not where Newcastle United are concerned.
So it’s not too surprising that Alan would lay the blame of Newcastle’s current malaise at the door of the owner.
This is what Alan said today:
“Newcastle missed a huge opportunity in the summer.” “Having punched above their weight last season and almost made it into the top four, this was the time to spend.” “The club was up and running again after so many years mired in uncertainty.”
“There was once again a feel-good factor and even Mike Ashley was enjoying it, but he needed to put his hand in his pocket and strengthen with two or three quality players.” “The best time to buy is when you are in a position of strength.” “It’s up to Ashley how much he spends, but just look at what Spurs did last summer.”
“They pipped Newcastle to fourth place and went out and spent £57M on six players. Newcastle spent £8.1M on three and got a fourth in on a free.” “Nowadays in the Premier League you need to spend £15m just to stand still.” “Newcastle needed to move forward again, particularly with the demands of the Europa League factored into the equation.”
“They should be knocking on the door of the top four and occasionally getting in it.” “Sadly the momentum built up by Alan Pardew last season has been lost and what is going on at St James’ right now is starting to look worrying.”
We have to get away from thinking that the more a club spends in the transfer window the better it is – today that’s simply not accurate or true – and it depends on the players you get in.
I give you Liverpool under Kenny Dalglish as an example of a manager who spent £120M and got precious little in return, but it is some gauge of a club’s vision and ambition - how much they want to succeed.
And I have to agree that our current situation is looking more than a little worrying, although my son Neil thinks we will snap out of the slump and still finish in the top ten this season.
I certainly hope Neil is right – but I have my doubts.
What do you think?
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org