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Howay The Lads!!

Mike Ashley And Freddy Shepherd Almost Polar Opposites

9:22 am, Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 62 Comments

It’s very interesting to compare Freddy Shepherd, the Chairman who led Newcastle for ten years from December 1st, 1997 through August of 2007, with Mike Ashley, who bought the club six years ago.


Freddy Shepherd - but we don’t have the money – don’t make me laugh

Freddy had unlimited ambitions for Newcastle, being born and bred in the area, and Freddy used to bid for top players with money we just didn’t have.

Two good examples are Wayne Rooney, who we were willing to pat out £25M for in the summer of 2004, before Manchester United came in and signed him.

And the next year we bought Michael Owen for £17M from Real Madrid, a deal that in retrospect has to be one of the worst financial deals ever made by Newcastle.

And now we have Mike Ashley – and to be fair to the Londoner,. he has put the club on a very solid financial setting, and we have money – but he wont pay it out to get top players – and Mike seems to have very limited ambitions for the club.

Newcastle continually barter with clubs today, to get the fee down as low as possible, and when a good player is involved – like this summer with St Etienne striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, another club comes in and agrees the fee and Newcastle lose out.

It’s almost like Freddy Shepherd and Mike Ashley are polar opposites.

mike ashley smiling

Mike Ashley – why don’t we meet their fee – don’t make me laugh

One spent money on top players we didn’t have, and the other will not spend the money we do have on top players.

We probably need something in the middle, but it’s very frustrating for fans, as we keep missing out because we will not bid that extra million or two to meet a selling club’s fee.

We will continue to miss out on our top targets – and we’ll have to rely on Graham Carr and his scouting staff, to find good and almost unknown players – players big clubs will not yet be after – if we are to become great again.

That’s a risky and difficult endeavor, and at best it will take many years to create a good side.

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Tags: Financial Fair Play · Financials · Newcastle News · Other News · Recruitment · Transfer News and Rumours


62 responses so far ↓

  • 1 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    i bet carr looks to get out after tdl

  • 2 Rotonda heights // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:29 AM


    I long ago gave up hope of winning anything in my lifetime especially when Ashley asked the Mansoors for 800M instead of the previous going price of 200M. We are just cursed.

    However and this proves how incredibly naive I must be, I still or I did regard watching football as one of the few remaining pleasures in life. This has totally gone for me now.

    Losing games when you are at least trying to play some football is one thing. Coming 16th with no attempt to pass and move and keep the ball on the deck and with another 7 years of Pardew’s dismal ”play for a point” philosophy is more than I can stomach.

  • 3 Spoof // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    With Shepherd at least we had hope, which is something we don’t have now, all we hope for now is a fluky cup run, which isn’t the best feeling in the world.

  • 4 Rowan Milsted // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    I really doubt we were ever in for PEA anyway. It never seemed likely to happen and all we were only ever ‘linked’ as a number of clubs were, who had more money and the promise of CL football. It was unrealistic and nothing was ever confirmed so I don;t know why we keep going on about it, especially on day three of the transfer window.

    Personally I think Bent would be a good signing but not at £8m. If we can get his wages down and sign him for around £5m I think he’ll score 12-20 goals for us next season, which is more than just about anyone else will get.

    I also think we should be shifting Heaven and earth to sign Bony at around £12m. Swansea can offer stability and proven progress over the last few seasons, and a top manager to boot. However, if we put in a good offer with decent wages and the promise that he’ll play most games (I’d start him over Bent) then we could get him.

    Ultimately it’s day three of the window and a lot of people seem to have given up already. Now that’s what I call a lack of ambition!

  • 5 lesh // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    Surely we only appeared to be willing to sign Wayne Rooney by paying out £25M for in the summer of 2004, before Manchester United came in and signed him.

    Could it have been that Paul Stretford, Rooney’s agent, had his office in SJP that enabled a bit of collusion between him and Freddy…… To jack up the fee Man U would pay?

    No, that’d be naughty wouldn’t it, surely not;

  • 6 Toon_Tom // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    Slank (19 from previous post) – you dont become a top team by winning the league cup mate!!

    You become a top team by playing in europe, challenging for top 4 every year, taking the game to teams like man utd, city, chelskea – and for this you do need massive investment

  • 7 Graeme // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    But MA has already stated what he wants – young, cheap players that will develop and increase in value. That can be sold later, for a profit!!

    How does PEA fit into that situation, when he fails the first criteria?? – CHEAP!!!

  • 8 tequilamag // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    Rotonda where is your evidence the Mansoors wanted to buy Newcastle and where is the evidence MA wanted 800 mill for the club ?

  • 9 Santon03 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:32 AM

    back on Shepperd days 20 million would have been huge transfer possibly record breaking, nowadays seems not much.
    Even seems not much, trying to make 20 million profit is still very hard thing to do, but people seems to forget about this.

  • 10 Spoof // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    I don’t believe that was the case, I feel we genuinely did try to sign him, don’t forget that we signed Owen the following summer, the club were going for the big starts back then.

  • 11 jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Torq…it is not lack of ambition that PEA chose Dortmund over us (if we even bid for him), the lack og ambition comes from the indication that we once again haven’t done our job when it comes to identify targets that we can actually attract.

    It is all about expectations; can we get this player, can we afford him and would he be willing to come here?

    I know it’s only day three of the transfer window, but these question should have been asked this season as well as last season. It is amateur work in my work (that’s all I am saying).

    I love NUFC, but it’s run by amateur!

  • 12 Ibizatoon // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:35 AM

    Rotonda…Regardless of opinion on how and why, it is a damn shame that so many people are at the point where they have given up because the belief and joy is gone. We can pick the reasons apart all day, but the end result is the same.

    I do however think that a little bit too much is being made of style of play. I think as a first step, it would be good to just get some excitement back on the field. Back in our promotion season, it wasn’t tricky or beautiful football, but it was passionate.

    For me, that is the biggest thing missing from our club and let’s face it, the Geordies are a passionate bunch and need that to be replicated.

    I do truly hope that they pull something off to instill that belief again, although I appreciate that will be hard. We fans were here long before Ashley & Co and will be long after.

  • 13 lesh // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:38 AM


    I seem to remember a photo of Ashley and Llambias in a bar in Dubai – reportedly waiting for the Arabs to come back to them with an improved offer.

    Waiting for wealthy Arabs to contact them in a bar? Needless to say the offer never came. It just beggared belief, the arrogance, the lack of respect, ignorance!!

  • 14 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:39 AM


    I know where I would want to go Borussia Dortmund if I was Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

    Dortmund – Championship League losing finalists
    Runners up in Bundersleig
    Chance of winning both this season.

    Or a mid table Premiership team.

    Freddie Shepherd might of had great ambitions for the TOON but with no money -Shepherd left was a club that was losing over £30m a year, had debts of £70m, had no assets they could borrow more money against, and had a set of players on long, lucrative contracts. -
    Recipe for a Portsmouth

  • 15 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    they let perch go bring in bent and taylor and a couple of a,n,others
    i would be happy with a,n,others but bent and taylor k,m,a for my moneyto give to you f,g,b

  • 16 Ba Humbug // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    Re: Bent –

    Pro – he can poach a LOT of goals, Lambert we all know has favouritism issues, Bent will want to prove his doubters wrong so let him do it in a newcastle shirt

    Cons – he’s a mercenary, proved that when he left sunderland, age (but not THAT old come on!!), ex-sunderland (doesnt bother me personally in the slightest

    If the price is right, then he’d be a great option as a 2nd/ 3rd striker in the squad.

  • 17 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    portsmouth got rid of all greedy money grabbing thieves in charge they will pos rise again same with rangers

  • 18 tequilamag // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    Lesh, I have been looking for an article I read that said when he was trying to sell after the KK fiasco that there were 8 enquiries but only one was an offer and that was from a consortium who were not able to get all the money together. Nothing at all about the Mansoors. If he had been offered 2oo mill I am fairly sure he would have snappped their hands off at the time. For better or worse we are stuck with MA and no amount of moanibg on a blog is going to change that.

  • 19 Markaccus // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:42 AM


    Andy Carroll wasnt my fault. I was waiting for a replacement pass so he could come here on the x6 from blyth shops, where he had been sunning himself for 2 weeks. Unfortunately, nexus couldnt get my pass over the line in time and he ended up getting a lift to west ham in the back of a flat bed.

  • 20 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    ba humbug two poachers up front you need to supply a pair we cannot

  • 21 Santon03 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    FIFA Financial Fair Play is the best way to go if it’s real.

  • 22 Toon-Prodigy // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:44 AM


    I disagree. Ashley was flapping about staying up so he spent.

    We would not of brought in those players if we were sitting comfortable in the top half or mid-table. Basically, if we didn’t have the injury crisis.

    Ashley is ambitious only when it suits him personally. When something maybe is at stake or to fit his own agenda.

    The money is there and we are crying out for a top class forward and we have been since January.

    NUFC CAN attract a 10-15 million pound proven goal scorer I don’t doubt that for a second.

    Im off to bed, been a long night. Have fun lads.

  • 23 Santon03 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    I don’t think Monaco or PSG have income to pay those transfers. Where the f@ck is Platini?

  • 24 jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    Okay I have to share something funny here; those who know me on here knows I don’t play FIFA or FM and like so many others have to google these new players everyone is talking about :) lol

    But a few weeks ago a bought FM 2013 (can anyone help me with tactics by the way) so I could get up to speed with the street lingo and players names bantered around.

    I am managing Leeds (no need to ruin Newcastle I’ll leave that to someone else) and Newcastle fired Pardew and hired Pulis – and this happened just as Pulis and Stoke had gone there separated ways in the real world and believe it or not but they suddenly started to play football.

    Pardew on the other hand took over at WBA (it wasn’t pretty, but he won them the FA Cup). Well just thought it was fun in the the context of everything.

    Leeds on the other hand is in the EPL in their second season under my leadership (but my tactics are god awful so I am become a second rated 4-4-2 advocate :( )

    ..and it is still not pretty nor affective!!!

  • 25 TorqToon // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    Jesp – how do we know we haven’t done that?! For all we know, Dortmund might not have even considered PEA Until we spoke with him?!

    We could’ve got the player, we could’ve afforded the player (willing to pay more if reports are to be believed?) and he stated himself that he was willing to come here.

    It just so happens the champions league runners up came in for him, and he doesn’t chase money, but success.

    I very much doubt he was our only target!

    Graham Carr knows what he is doing. If he can bring in players like moussa and Yanga under lambias, then he can do it under JK.

  • 26 Puppet Pardew's Brainlessness // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    It’s 3 days into the transfer window and we haven’t signed anyone!
    I’m going to shoot Mike Ashley then myself. it’s unacceptable and depressing.

  • 27 Ibizatoon // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    PPB…Can you add Indy to that list?

    Sell Benny, loan in the Ox. Seems a likely scenario….

  • 28 Greebol1892 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:50 AM

    RE: Swansea signings – Laudrup vs Pardew/Kinnear….. if you were a professional footballer, which would you choose? No contest.

  • 29 Beattie25 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:51 AM


    I fully agree with what you say but when there is absoloutley nothing else to cheer then the very least we expect is passion and quality.

    For years we laughed at the teams that played awful football and were proud that our club played nothing of the sort.

    Then we accepted poor quality due to the poor management and signings that we had and the lack of passion then was unforgivable.

    We were relegated and had nothing but broken hearts so when we then showed the passion we had lost we fell in love with the club again.

    Then we signed some real quality and the least we still expect is decent football and a bit of passion.

    These things are extinct from NUFC whilst Ashley and Joe and Pardew are ruling the roost. We have become the teams we laughed at. We are an embaressment.

    No longer will the opposition think of NUFC as a passionate team that play good football. We are a foreign legion that plays long ball, it’s simply unforgivable.

    It not simply down to instilling passion into our football, we need quality. I am fed up of being played off the park against every team, big or small.

    We can blame Ashley for lack of ambition but he is only complimented by a manager with a complete lack of ability.

    The club has bounced around for the past 3 seasons but I guarantee we’ve found our level as a lower mid table club unless we not only improve the team but drastically improve the coaching.

    We are the new Stoke, there is no denying it. My social circle is made up of fans following a variety of clubs and the general thought is ‘at least we aren’t newcastle’.

    Passion on the pitch is the absolute bare minimum we demand, quality is the very least we deserve. Alan Pardew can offer us neither in my opinion.

    If I supported any other club NUFC would be everything I hate about modern day football. Sadly I was born to follow them and have my heart broken, dreams shattered and hope smashed more often than not.

    What’s to blame? All 3 points of the triangle. Owner, DOF, Manager.

  • 30 TorqToon // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:51 AM

    Ibiza – where does Indy find all these clowns??!!!

    Pay £2mil to borrow a player for a year?!?! Yeah ok then!

  • 31 Laurent Robert 32 // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:52 AM

    Bent will rely on other people giving him service to score from. We are awful at that, so what service would he be getting? At least Cisse can score wonder strikes.

    In a well coached team, players who unsually may not have the productivity they should have, will find a new understanding of the game and contribute more positively in new areas.

    We don’t have that technical level of management and coaching, so the disjointed dross will bundle on. As will Pardews lies.

    Get who you want in player-wise, the potential is still compressed due to a prat in charge of the team. More lies from his silver tongue will follow.

  • 32 Sazzer // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    One has to remember that Ashley is still fixing Shepherds mistakes. It’s like starting the season with hell of lot of minus points.

  • 33 Markaccus // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    £6m for Jonjo Shelvey and you wonder why #NUFC shop abroad

    Thats the first sensible tweet i jave ever seen from colin. He is not wrong there for once

  • 34 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    wrong the failings and problems we face are now of ashleys making

  • 35 jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew // Jul 3, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    Torq…truthfully we don’t know anything do we?

    …all I am saying is that it’s my assessment on the matter based on what has happened the last few seasons.

    On PEA Dortmund have been linked to him for the past three month or so. But is it not about PEA, but about expectations as I put it.

    In my book we are run by amateurs and have just hired the biggest amateur of them all with 30 years of experience and according to himself is the best DoF around ;)

  • 36 rainrix // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Markaccus… Then you look further down his time line and apparently obertan is to be used as leverage in the PEA deal. Kinda shatters that temporary sensible perception :)

  • 37 jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Torq…it remains to be seen. PEA has been linked with alot of teams (that cannot come as a surprise to either JFK or Ashley).

    I think it was yesterday or so that I read that we had tabled a bid for PEA and then I read Dortmund had a bid accepted that was suppose to be less than what we bid?

    We should not kid ourselves; we had an idea of what PEA would cost. If it’s to much for us then cross him off the shortlist and move on :)

    It will remain to be seen if we have learned anything from last season (de Jong and Remy)

    It’s just my take on it…fair enough if you see it differently!

  • 38 fatman // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    Shepherd ran up debts of £37m over the cost of the stadium expansion in his 10 years, Ashley has lost £46m in his short time as owner. who is better?

  • 39 ToonDarnSarf // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    How have we got the money now if our debt is actually higher than the club is valued?

    Sure, we could borrow it, or not pay off our debt, but that doesn’t count as having the money in my book.

  • 40 Beattie25 // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:02 AM


    Perfectly put.

    Anyone who thinks Darren Bent will be a decent signing is living 5 years in the past, forgets who our wingers are and has far too much confidence in Pardew to play the sort of attacking football Bent relies upon.

  • 41 Markaccus // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:02 AM


    Yeah i saw that the the other day. I suppose the laws of average would state he will accidently say something correct once in a while!

  • 42 Ibizatoon // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    Torq…What makes me smile the most is Indy, Mr ITK, advertises on twitter for people to give him info. Brilliant stuff. In that “email” he received, the guy said, “but I’m not fully aware of all details or the club involved yet, so best to keep that quiet until I contact you further.” Indy obviously thought it best to share it now though.

    Tbf, it’s the best comedic relief I am getting this summer :)

    Beattie…Could it then not be argued that our expectations are increasing at an unreasonable rate? Not sure unreasonable is the right word there, but hopefully you get my point.

    You are right, truth is we don’t appear to have the correct people in place to bring in a modern style of football, which was my point really, that is not the end of the world for me. Passionless football is.

    Style etc does take time, especially the way we’re approaching it. Then again, I’m aware my level of patience / expectation differs from other toon fans.

  • 43 Santon03 // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:05 AM

    Honda and Milan is one example, Honda could have joined Everton, Liverpool, Spurs, etc. but he choose to join Milan eventhough Milan couldn’t even pay 7mil CSKA asked without selling Robinho first.
    I think we are in the same boat with Milan right now, but Milan is more attractive. The city is more glamourous and the club has won many thropies.
    Even if we went for Honda with higher wage, he would still go to Milan.
    At the end of the day, it’s up to the players.

  • 44 Slank // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:06 AM


    RH @ 42

    Why wouldn’t Ashley ask for 800M (if it’s true who knows) from the Mansoor family who are estimated to be worth an absolute fortune. If a very rich person wants to buy your house you are going to pitch it at the highest amount you can get because you know that they can afford it (as small change possibly?).

    Sheikh Mansour’s personal wealth is estimated at around £15bn plus as the world’s second richest royal family, they have access to an oil fortune worth £400 billion to £1 trillion.

    Ashley is a very wealthy man but is not in the same league as Sheikh Mansour or Roman Abramovich whose estimated fortune of U.S.$14.6 billion, is currently the 5th richest person in Russia and the 50th richest person in the world.

  • 45 headtheball // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:07 AM

    The NUFC Transfer Window song

    It’s a heartache
    nothing but a heartache
    Hits you when it’s too late
    Hits you when you’re down

    It’s a fools game
    Nothing but a fools game
    Standing in the cold rain
    Feeling like a clown

    But there is always the next window

  • 46 TurkishFan101 // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    @Torq your post on Ed and argument of ambition.

    Ed is correct. We did have as much chance as BVB to getting PEA. He clearly stated he would choose BPL before any other league and was basically looking to start every game for a team. We lacked the ambition because we have not lodged a improved bid since last January Transfer Window.

    PEA would of came here i am 100% certain if we matched their bid of €13 million which is £11 million. He would have nothing to lose, if we finished bottom with him, he would simply go to another BPL team and this would not effect him at all.

  • 47 ToonDarnSarf // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:15 AM

    Always amusing when people think quotes on the Internet is proof…

  • 48 the truth will out // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:15 AM

    ashley i hope you burn more than your fingers tw@

  • 49 TorqToon // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:16 AM

    Turkish – As I say, nobody really knows what has happened re bids etc. We might nit have upped our bid, we migby have offered the same. Nobody knows.

    Early days and plenty of time to go. Our ambition wasn’t questioned in January when we signed 2 of the best up and coming players in France (arguably Europe).

    just can’t get in board with all the doom mongering and people already writing us off for next season as relegation contenders.

  • 50 Mac // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:17 AM

    Turkish are u mad. We don’t even know if we werr in for him. And his comments on Monday said he favoured German and Prem league. Borussia Dortm are a well run Champions league runners up and play in a fast improving league. It is a no brainer.

  • 51 tequilamag // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    Slank, from what I can gather Man City cost 200 mill, and yeah I would love it if somebody offered me 4 times as much as my house was worth but its never going to happen and I would be wasting my time if I was to advertise my house for such a sum. From what I can gather Barry Moat was the only credible bidder for Newcastle and he could not get the money together to further his did for us.

  • 52 one Tony Green // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    Rotonda Ashley never asked anyone for 800 million and yet you keep trying to wind people up that the Arabs had made an offer for the club.

  • 53 Beattie25 // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:21 AM


    If we were seeing any indications of gradual change then I’m sure we could call ours a club in transition, but there is nothing on the pitch, in the boardroom or anywhere within the club that shows us progression.

    The only thing I believe we have right is the scouting set up. But the club are not fully committed/interested in signing many of the players we should be and now Alab wants to change the set up to allow more experience in the team to compensate his own shortcomings.

    I personally don’t think my expectations are too high. I expect us to be able to outplay relegation threatened teams at home, never be beaten 6-0 at home or away and I expect us to show quality given we have 11 internationals in the team.

    For me it’s not about high finishes. I for one would gladly accept mid table if we played with passion and quality.

    Some people might just want to see passion and commitment but that only will ever get you so far. Giving 100% shouldn’t even be asked for, it should be a prerequisite for any club, of it’s not then questions should be asked of the manager first and then the players.

    Liverpool at home was the most embarrassed I’ve ever been as a NUFC fan and that was unforgivable.

    But even if we had passion that day we still would’ve been pummled because we have no tactical quality whatsoever.

    If you put passion in this team next season but keep the tactics the same I l think we will finish lower than we would if we had tactics that outweighed the passion.

  • 54 TorqToon // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    And Turkish I have to disagree. When Dortmund expressed their interest, we did NOT stand an equal chance of getting him.

    Not in a month of Sunday’s.

  • 55 Slank // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    tequilamag @ 51

    It has always puzzled me as why there were so few (hardly any really) local buyers because it’s not as if the North East is devoid of them.

  • 56 Raffo // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    Are people wired up right? Do some people go to the same clinic as JFK? Why would anyone chose us over BVB? Champ league finalists, v highly regarded team and challenging for honours. We simply arent in that league. We have blinkers on when it comes to the toon, I do too. We simply dont have the pull. We are in the NE, something that will put off alot of players, esp when competing with London clubs. We dont have the finances and pull. Thes ooner we just face facts that we are a mid table prem team, ave players will come to us, improve and move on and help sustain the club with the fees, a la Carroll, thas where we are.

    I would love nothing more than to have big signings again, but I want the club to be financially stable too so it is there in 10 years time for my son to become a fan. We simply have to check our ambitions a little for the time being

  • 57 Sazzer // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:27 AM

    Ashley paid off Shepards debts to others and put us in debt to him instead so we don’t have to pay interest.

  • 58 Ibizatoon // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:29 AM

    Beattie…I hope this isn’t too much of a cop out, but I am waiting to see what the new season brings, after a pre-season with the new players we got in January. What is it we actually do know about the past few years?

    1) After a successful summer window and then the addition of Cisse in January, Pardew did have a good campaign with us and guided us to 5th in the PL. Yes with some luck and no the football wasn’t to the best of standards, but it was a new team and that can be expected.

    2) Pardew wanted more players in last summer. People can harp on and on about how he said afterwards that he was happy with the squad, but we all know, at least we should all know, that wasn’t the case. All summer long he spoke of new players and perhaps the most notable point was after Raylors injury where he said he would need to speak with Mike about a replacement to only say 24 hours later that we’re fine. Where was this coming from? Not hard to figure out.

    3) After this approach didn’t work, Ashley pulled his finger out and got 5 players in January. That’s all well and good, but trying to integrate 5 new players to a team already in the relegation mix in a new league was always going to be a tough task. People will say “well they started well until they were Pardewed”…well it could also be they ran out of energy after a couple of games, it is a different pace to the French league and it will and does have some impact.

    Before I condemn anyone for last season, i do think it important to give them a pre-season together, something that should have happened last summer.

  • 59 blew // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:31 AM

    Graeme @ 7
    I have read many times about Ashleys model of bringing
    in players on the cheap, developing them and selling for a profit. In his 6 years at the club I cant think of 1 player where this has happened. Carroll was already at the club and Ba activated a clause. Take away signing on fees and agents fees we broke even on that deal. Bearing in mind that young players we have bought seem to go backwards, under our inadequate coaches, I don’t get the theory of buying cheap and selling at a profit, its not working..

  • 60 one Tony Green // Jul 3, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Torq I agree German Football is huge. FFS Pep Guardiola turned down City, United and Chelsea for Bayern Munich.

    Ed talks about trying to sign Rooney but who did he go to Man United why because their a bigger club. Same as PEA and Dortmund

  • 61 one Tony Green // Jul 3, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    Well said Raffo

  • 62 roytoon21 // Jul 3, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    Mike Ashley is a great business mind, but he doesnt know squat about football..

    He will keep NUFC financially strong but he wont ever understand the game from a fan’s point of view..

    All we as fans need is some sign to show he is atleast interested, but he does’nt give interviews nor does he physically make his prescence felt..

    I would be happy if we get Bent and a good defender this winidow..because i genuinely believe we signed five great players in january, who are going to stand up and be counted this season. Also we need to let a few youngsters get that damn chance to shine, maybe Newton, Sammy and Vuckic

    Bigi will do great this season, we just need to also sort out the gutierrez role, he seems like an extra player.

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