We don’t know where we’ll end up in the Premier League this season – probably in 9th position, as long as we don’t go into a big slump is our remaining nine games – but it’s clear we could have done a lot better than that, if owner Mike Ashley and manager Alan Pardew hadn’t helped to self-destruct Newcastle’s season this year.
Owner Mike Ashley – cashed in on Yohan Cabaye and weakened the side
It started in mid-January when PSG came in for our best player Yohan Cabaye – a man who had recently been deployed as a withdrawn striker, and had hit five goals in his last seven games for Newcastle.
And in Newcastle’s wisdom what did they do – they took the money – £20M – and they didn’t bring in a replacement – and nobody can say we wouldn’t have done a lot better with Yohan in the side in the final 16 games of the season starting with Norwich – when Cabaye stopped playing for Newcastle.
That was bad enough, but the sale of Cabaye almost guaranteed that Loic Remy would not sign for Newcastle this summer, and Loic – who’s done everything right both on and off the field at Newcastle – will now join a more ambitious club than Newcastle, and one that plays in the Champions league every season – maybe even Arsenal.
And if that wasn’t enough Alan Pardew had one of his moments of madness on the touchline, when we were hammering Hull City 3-1 after 72 minutes, and he managed to get himself banned for seven games and shamed the club, and in one mad moment turned what should have been a huge positive with a great win at Hull, into a huge negative.
That takes some doing – it really does.
The first three games are a stadium ban, and the first game of that ban saw us lose to bottom of the league club Fulham – who got their first win in 10 games, and while you can never be certain that Alan’s absence hurt the team – it certainly looked like it.
And if we cannot get back to playing with some urgency and vitality, Newcastle may even be caught be one of the sides still well behind us – with Aston Villa are 9 points behind Newcastle.
So after Newcastle have shot themselves in the foot twice in a short two months – what lies in store for Newcastle this summer?
It’s a good time to have a good clear-out and players like Loic Remy, Shola Ameobi, Dan Gosling, Jonas Gutierrez, Sylvain Marveaux and Gabby Obertan are certain to leave the club, and players like Davide Santon, Ben Arfa and Papiss Cisse could leave.
If this exodus does take place as expected, then Newcastle will need to bring in up to six top players to rebuild the squad, and we certainly hope that Chief Scout Graham Carr is very busy in his scouting duties, because Newcastle will need signings lined up before the summer arrives.
But it’s not all bad news – not at all – this could be like the summer of 2011, when we brought in players of the caliber of Demba Ba, Yohan Cabaye and Davide Santon and finished 5th top the next season.
That’s what we are hoping for, and if there was ever a time for Mike Ashley to spend big money on incoming transfers, it’s this summer, after another disappointing season.
What do you think?
Note: Lewis Williams is in his final year at the University of West London (UWL) studying for a BSc (Hons) in Construction Management, and he is busy on his dissertation on Site Waste Management Plans and he has a survey he needs filled out.
This survey is for anyone who has been part of a construction project (past or present) that used some form of waste management on the project.
See if you can help him with they survey here.