While we will not go overboard about the increased communication fostered by the regular Fan Forum meetings, there was some decent information given out from last Monday meeting at St. James’ Park, when the club issued the full minutes of the meeting on their web-site yesterday.
Lee Charnley – at the Fans Forum meeting Monday night
22 people were in attendance at the meeting and it does seem the club are taking these meetings seriously, and the following were in attendance representing the club on Monday night.
Lee Charnley – Managing Director, John Irving – Finance Director, Lee Marshall – PR and Supporter Liaison Manager (chairman), Bob Moncur – Club Ambassador, Keith Nicholson – Acting Head of Newcastle United Foundation, Eddie Rutherford – Head of Facilities
Steve Storey – Head of Safety and Security, Wendy Taylor – Head of Media and Stephen Tickle – Box Office Manager.
Newcastle clarified the criteria for the new head coach position, and said it didn’t matter if the new coach was an Englishman or not, and that the coach would be selected at the end of the season.
And the way the coach will work at Newcastle does give the coach some say in who comes into the club, and he’s essentially one of four men who will make the decisions on incoming players – with Chief Scout Graham Carr, Managing Director Lee Charley and owner Mike Ashley being the other three.
The Board clarified the final decision on who comes in is not the coach’s decision, but that he will have ample input.
And as I read the clarification about the coach’s position I even had the wild idea that somebody like Frank de Boer could work in the environment the club are creating- a wild idea indeed. 😀
But one area that will trouble some top applicants is how Mike Ashley sells players – especially when he sells them in January and doesn’t replace them.
On that particular topic, Lee Charnley did say the club would try to do all their transfer business in the summer, with little business being done in January – and that seems a good approach but doesn’t solve the problem of untimely sales.
The Board said they were mending relationships with ncjMedia since the ban had been lifted (at last!), and in fact some of the local football journalists could be invited to one of the meetings.
That was suggested so they can see first-hand what goes on in the meetings, and that seems like a good idea.
It will also help promote the Fans Forum which can become a very useful communications vehicle between the club and the fans, and one is certainly needed.
They also explained why Davide Santon was loaned out and said the opportunity of a loan move would not be available in the summer and that he has only one year left in his contract.
But there were no follow-up questions on how it has weakened the squad, with the injuries to Paul Dummett and recently to Massadio Haidara.
The club are anxious to get the minutes read by as many fans as possible, so here are the full minutes and it’s definitely worth a read to hear from the club ob a wide range of issues.
Communications between the club and the fans have been very poor in the Ashley era, so this is a vehicle where that could improve and even improve big time.
And one way they could improve things and get the Fans Forum the publicity they seem to need on what they are trying to do – is if Mike Ashley turned up at one of the meetings – that would help things – but not sure it will ever happen.
Note: An avid reader of the blog Andrew Foley is participating in the Great North Run for a charity named Tommy’s, which is a charity that funds medical research into the causes of premature birth, stillbirth and miscarriage.
See if you can help Andrew reach his goal of £400 by donating on his just-giving page here.
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