This Man Is Running Newcastle – And It’s Not Ashley

On May 24th in his Sky Sports interview, it looked like Mike Ashley was going to leave the running of the club and the football matters to the Newcastle Board of Directors, which is led by Lee Charnley.

And that seems to have happened in the summer, with Mike Ashley simply providing the funds to Lee and the Board making the decisions on who to bring in and who to sell – and just as important – who not to sell.

We not only managed to bring in four quality players for that £50M, but we also kept some of our best players – so we have a very decent squad this season.


Lee Charnley – this is how you look when you are running Newcastle

Steve McClaren has revealed that he has talked to Mike Ashley only once, since he signed on at Newcastle.

So it was Charnley and the then Board of Charnley, Graham Carr and Bob Moncur, who selected McClaren to be the Newcastle head coach and Charnley’s decision to fire the woeful John Carver and Steve Stone.

Steve has talked before the West Ham game tonight about when he met Mike Ashley before the Borussia Monchengladbach game, when it was reported at the time the owner had met with Steve before that game.

“I met him once before the Gladbach game.” We had 10 minute’s chit-chat, mostly about Sports Direct and how it makes so much money and how he’s turned this club around in eight years to be in profit.”

“And for us to spent £50M and not sell our best player in the last two days of the window.” “The rest, we’ve said. Lee Charnley is running the ship.”

“We’ve got a good relationship.” “I’m sure we’ll see Ashley if he’s got a problem, but hopefully not.”

“He’s kind of  thrown it all over to Lee. It’s a huge responsibility.”  “Lee, myself, Graham Carr and Bob Moncur have to stay very close and tight, which we have been and we are.”

The Managing Director under Mike Ashley has always been responsible for the day-to-day operations of the club, but Mike Ashley has removed himself from the Board, so that he doesn’t get involved in the football decisions at the club.

So Ashley has given Charnley a free rein, but he’s now (totally) responsible for how Newcastle perform from now on – with freedom comes responsibility.

And Steve is absolutely right – that’s a huge responsibility, but after all Lee is the top executive at the club.

It’s an excellent move by Mike Ashley and especially for Newcastle United – we hope it stays that way.

Comments welcome.

10 comments so far

  • Lindisfarne

    Sep 14, 2015 at 8:40 AM

    Comment #1

    Biscuits In!

  • Jib

    Sep 14, 2015 at 8:40 AM

    Comment #2

    McClaren says no senior players are being loaned while NUFC are still in the Capital One cup

  • cyprus

    Sep 14, 2015 at 8:45 AM

    Comment #3

    It’s tough to guess who will be the ‘game changer’. I’m not sure SDJ can actually take the pace of the PL,never mind running the pace of a game. Who knows though. That Pirlo guy did it, so did ZZ, and they were both so slow.

    Key players tonight will probably be Widji, Siss, Colb. Thauvin, if they try – and play well Fire 🙂 and… Cisse, who’ll get our goal, were we to win by 1-0…

    On this:
    Interesting. When asked, KK said he felt MA was a good guy (yep, heard it myself), but there had been too many people ‘between’ him and Mike. Obviously meaning Wise etc.

  • Lindisfarne

    Sep 14, 2015 at 8:55 AM

    Comment #4

    “Crumbs Steve! You’ve spent £50 million and promised to buy Garibaldi and if the budget stretched Oreo. All you have come back with is a split packet at a knock down price, a crumbly waffer that needs sweetening and two deliciously chewy bars with a few splendid nuggets that are rare and don’t last long. Next time I will do the online shopping!”

  • Jib

    Sep 14, 2015 at 9:01 AM

    Comment #5

    You ever heard the phrase “never judge a book by looking at the cover”
    Judging Charnley by this window and what other clubs have said about him , he’s good at his job.
    It’s a bit immature to mock someone for their appearance.
    Just wait for the next PM’s question time from Westminster , you will see a skinny bearded pensioner give smarmy Cameron a REAL run for his money.

  • ilovetoon8788

    Sep 14, 2015 at 9:04 AM

    Comment #6

    Desperately need atleast 1 point tonight. We cannot be lingering inside the relegation zone much sooner. We have a bit of easier games coming up and it’s crucial we start picking up points or we are going to be stuck there for long long time.

  • Lindisfarne

    Sep 14, 2015 at 9:08 AM

    Comment #7


    Does it not entertain you?!

    We will not see your man at PMQs as Jez doesn’t agree with it and he is too principled to participate….mmm!?!

  • Ericles

    Sep 14, 2015 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #8

    I said it, on here and elsewhere , that McLaren was appointed as head coach and not as manager because the actual manager was Charnley. Few believed me. Now the chickens are coming home to roost. Another aspect of the dishonest regime that is despoiling our club.

  • Big Archie

    Sep 14, 2015 at 3:51 PM

    Comment #9

    Rather strange statement there Ed

    “but we also kept some of our best players”?
    Not “all”
    Not “most”

    So which of our best players did we not keep?

  • isleofmanman

    Sep 14, 2015 at 4:35 PM

    Comment #10

    So Charnley is suddenly a class act??

    Erm, no. He has become important through no fault of his own. He has much to be modest about.

    I don’t think identifying talent and buying it is particularly difficult – but operating an ambitious business successfully is not part of his CV

    What protests and defence did he put up when Ashley instructed him to sell our best players???

    And lets not get carried away about £50m spendies and how wonderful Ashley is. He’s not. He’s still tight fisted because…

    In 2014/15 NUFC was paid £78m by the Premier League. The new TV rights deal 2016/19 guarantees the BOTTOM club £97m !!!

    Tenth place gets £118m so there was every justification for spending of £75m+

    So where is Mr Very Average Charnley in all this?

    I’d love to know


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