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Latest Update – Things Are Even Worse Than They Look

12:01 pm, Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 66 Comments

The latest news on the McClaren situation is that Sky Sports journalist Keith Downie has reported today that Steve McClaren did arrive at the Benton training grounds about 8:00 am for training and is taking the morning training.

What a completely bizarre situation that is – the papers are going to have a field day today with all of this nonsense – at the expense of Newcastle United.

The three Board members Lee Charnley, Graham Carr and Bob Moncur met away from Newcastle yesterday to mull over whether to replace Steve McClaren.

Yes that’s right – they still haven’t decided to replace the manager who has already dug a rather deep hole that Newcastle will be unable to find a way out of before the end of the season.

And they are still undecided about whether to fire him?

lee charnley and mike ashley

Lee Charnley and Mike Ashley
The club has been exposed as being in a complete mess

That will mean we will be a Championship club come May – and maybe even before that.

And if we do down those running the club cannot really complain when they have become a complete embarrassment to Newcastle United and as Alan Shearer pointed out on saturday night – Newcastle is a mess from top to bottom.

He’s right.

The fans are seeing first hand as this thing unfolds just how inept the Board seem to be and they are dithering around and seemingly playing for time to keep McClaren in place – at almost all cost.

Keith Downie reported today they would only replace McClaren if they could get a suitable replacement in.

But one wonders what a suitable replacement means?

Is it somebody who can get more than two wins in their last 13 games and 9 defeats since the win at Tottenham – which is what McClaren’s recent record is at Newcastle?

This thee man triumvirate that runs Newcastle and has never ever worked – was the brain child of Lee Charnley – and that’s a major reason a top manager wasn’t brought in over the summer –  because they wouldn’t come in under those circumstances.

But the problem that Charnley and company now have is if they do fire McClaren – who agreed to a reduced role in the summer as head coach with Graham Carr continuing in charge of all transfers – who would come in to replace him?

Not many good managers, unless they give him a lot more say with transfers and the general running of the club  – and we don’t know if Charnley and Carr will allow that.

Newcastle are in a total mess at the moment – that’s obvious.

So the easy part was sacking McClaren – but for some reason even that seems to be very difficult for those  running Newcastle – and they seem pretty clueless – much like the head coach himself.

If McClaren does go – we will not hold our breath about who will replace him, but talk of Davide Moyes, Rafa Benitez and Brendan Rodgers seems premature and may simply be paper talk.

It seems that Lee Charnley and company are playing for time – we have no idea why – other than they cannot seem to make a decision and they don’t want to fire McClaren – who they appointed in the first place.

Why Mike Ashley isn’t involved and driving decisions right now when time is of the essence reflects very poorly on him – and ultimately he is totally responsible for this complete and utter mess we are in at Newcastle United.

It’s more than shameful for such a great club.

🙁 🙁 🙁

I can tell you from real practical experience of having been involved in situations like this at IBM when some tough decisions have to be made – that in any other business on this planet – heads would have rolled long before now.

It’s almost criminal what’s happening at Newcastle.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Coaching · Management · Newcastle News · Prayer · Premier League

66 responses so far ↓

  • 1 lesh // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:03 PM


  • 2 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:04 PM

    We all know exactly what a “suitable” replacement means, Ed.

  • 3 WWSBRD // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:04 PM


  • 4 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:04 PM

    Get a move on you numbskulls!

  • 5 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:05 PM


    It’s sounding suspiciously like the club is no less smug and complacent than it was at the Fans’ Forum meeting and before the last two defeats.


    It’s not hopeless. It’s absolutely deliberate.

  • 6 yorkshire_magpie // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:07 PM

  • 7 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:07 PM

    Wah Wah Wah Wah Waaaaahhh…. another slapstick board meeting ending with someone looking for smashed glasses on the floor, banging their head under the table, another getting his tie cut off with scissors, shoelaces tied together, accident with a trifle that sort of thing.

  • 8 lesh // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:08 PM

    Clearly Charnley hasn’t got the balls to sack McClaren.

    He’s useless and deserves the sack too – along with Carr

  • 9 Ron Knee // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:09 PM


    Is smugness in the Manual of Mental Disorders? It should be!

  • 10 yorkshire_magpie // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:09 PM

    According to the Guardian. Steve is meant to be sacked in the next 48 hours although he is back in training.

  • 11 lochinvar // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:11 PM

    Pantomime season in full swing.

    McLaren arrives early – with a driver !
    Takes one look at the welcoming photographers and ask driver to ” go round the back”

    McLaren stays to take training ?

    His driver leaves ( McClaren not hiding in the boot apparently ) in a hurry allegedly ( and don’t want any false accusations here ) possibly to get a bacon butty.

    FFS – does the Club not even have a canteen at Benton !

    Reported to be ” business as usual” with McLaren taking the Training Session.

    Board reported to be considering two new candidates – we could do worse than get both in.

    No doubt McLaren will leave the training ground later wearing his Cloak of Invisibility.

    Oh yes he will…oh no he won’t
    Can I get an ice cream in the interval ?

  • 12 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:11 PM

    I plainly forgot to add the image of Lee on a miniature unicycle riding around the boardroom with his underpants being drawn into the wheel, being chased by a giggling Mike Ashley with a blow lamp. Good business.

  • 13 Goldmbemba // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:12 PM

    Do we rate the guardian very highly in terms of reliability anyway?

    Reliable sources seem to be bbc / sky / …and of course the fountain of truth that is Ed’s blog or course 🙂

  • 14 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:13 PM

    Lochinvar – you went from the Scottish play to panto in a day! How the mighty have been slain in battle! 🙂

  • 15 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:14 PM

    This is perhaps a last chance to show the fans that they have finally woken up to where their policies and decisions have been leading.

    But if it is to be business as usual, then the ire really does need to move on from McClaren.

  • 16 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:19 PM

    The ‘Three Stooges’ are hoping McClown turns it around so they can save face – as they are the three that chased McClown for 6 months plus.

    Problem is if they sack McClown they would have to swallow their pride and own up for cocking it up.

    Or do the honourable thing –
    SACK McClown and resign from the club instead of dragging us further down and again making us LOOK STUPID!!!!!!!!!

  • 17 Barton // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:20 PM

    You know when things are desperate when you still wish Dastardly Derek was running things instead of Penfold,this has far passed being embarrassing for we Geordies,Fat man really must not care what so ever about were we finnish/religation at all,its the only logical answer to why he has not stepped in and wiped the floor with the lot of the incompetent cretins,he must not give a toss either way were we finnish the season,time comes were you have to ask yourself some honest questions,supporting should be a joy,not anger at oneself for supporting the team.

  • 18 lesh // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:20 PM

    An extract from the Guardian’s article speaks volumes:

    ‘Keith Bishop, a key advisor to Ashley, is said to have been in frequent contact with Charnley who has been reluctant to dismiss McClaren and was not prepared to rush into a hasty sacking’.

    Not prepared to rush into a hasty sacking? A hasty sacking after being in the bottom four all season? How much time does Charnley want?

  • 19 Rotonda heights // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:22 PM

    Does anyone feel an imminent armagheddon or implosion is at hand?

    You can only really get away with such shoddiness at all levels for a finite period and although it has been allowed to thrive here for far too long are the chickens finally all coming home to roost.

    It would be hard to imagine any business, for that is what it surely now represents, being run so, so badly.

    How can Charnley who appointed SM have the wherewithall, knowlegdge and gumption to depose his choice. As someone said the turkeys aren’t voting for Christmas.

    The whole rotten lot are complicit and will continue to form a defensive barrier while they collude to protect their collective backs from the maelstron that surely has to follow now.

  • 20 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:22 PM

    I don’t want to appear smug myself, but I must say I am definitely more modest than all of you lot put together. Easily.

  • 21 Rotonda heights // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:22 PM

    But Tsunki I have the most to be modest about.

  • 22 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:23 PM

    Meanwhile, down at The Good Old Days Music hall, Mike sings.

    At yonder club stand two board members
    Who they are I do not know
    I’ll ask them to sack McClaren
    They must answer yes or no

    (Charnley and Carr sing response)

    O NO Mike, No Mike, No Mike, No Mike
    O NO mike, No Mike, No Mike, No.

  • 23 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:25 PM

    I only hope Lee doesn’t treat a life threatening condition with the same deliberation or he is knackered before he starts.

    BandB – ah, therein lies the rub, eh? The outcome, or lack thereof, of this deliberation should decide whether we resort to the cruelty of ‘sticks to beat him with’.

  • 24 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:27 PM

    Rotonda, ah yes you say that, but it’s my humility that gives me the edge.

    On the subject of gumption, I hear you can actually get a bargain in 25 litre drums if you shop around. We could crowd fund an order and have it couriered to SJP.

  • 25 AncientC // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:27 PM

    So they apparently want a replacement lined up, so they can bring down the curtain on the career of a respected professional.

    And what kind of replacement is going to step forward to conspire against McClaren while he is still employed?

    Our very own Ides of March. How apt.

  • 26 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:28 PM

    If you think I am just treating this as one huge joke, I’m sorry but it clearly is. Just not the laughing kind. More of the crying on the inside kind.

  • 27 Tsunki // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:30 PM

    Et tu, Burley?


  • 28 Ron Knee // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:32 PM

    Are they hanging onto McClaren as a sort of bargaining counter to prevent the replacement from having the edge in the negotiations?

  • 29 BeeGuy // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:33 PM

    Some accountant must have figured out that it is more profitable to be relegated than stay in the Prem. Stop worrying, and enjoy MA’s ride to the bank!

  • 30 AncientC // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:34 PM

    Do you think they could get the new guy to sack Steve McClaren for them?

    I have a good idea, why don’t they just not say anything at all – have a new car parked in McClaren’s spot in the morning.

  • 31 stuart no9 // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:35 PM

    here we go again . Sadly it is going to be up to the supporters again to sicken the manager with vile abuse ,
    No it is not what we or i want but what else do you do ??? he has had it quie easy up to now but we a fans have to fight back .
    No one wants to see us go down , so sit back and do nothing wont do us any favours . As for support the team ??? those times are gone we have to get this man out and constant abuse at the highest level is in order , ok it may not work but at least TRY.

  • 32 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:35 PM

    They are holding out for a hero.
    I don’t think.

  • 33 Ron Knee // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:35 PM


    Wouldn’t it be more merciful to put McClaren out of his misery now and appoint young Cathro as interim manager?

  • 34 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:36 PM

    Would make a statement on DERBY DAY by BOYCOTTING the match in front of a World Audience.

    I’m up for it!!!!!

  • 35 JamRec // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:37 PM

    The Chronicle is reporting that the meeting between Charnley and Mac is not happening this afternoon anymore and they reckon the decision will be dragged out until tomorrow… is this some kind of sick joke!!

  • 36 Sav // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:39 PM

    Look on the brighter side. I don’t think we were ever going to have success with an office clerk like Charnley at the top of any ‘triumvirate’ and Carr buying limp-wristed, weak players with aspirations to move on before they even got here. Of course, only ‘damaged goods’ managers were ever going to buy into that.
    At least this total bind we find ourselves in might mean they have no choice now but to accede to the demands of a decent manager who will insist on calling the shots.

  • 37 stuart no9 // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:40 PM

    Maybe they are keeping him on as our next game is away , releasing the prerssure a bit instead of having 52000 screaming abuse at him – hoping he resigns so they dont have to pay compo??

  • 38 lochinvar // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:42 PM

    Next will be Nursery Rymes if I regress any further with having to watch NUFC descend into a Black Hole

  • 39 JamRec // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:42 PM

    Appreciate the optimism Sav but I don’t think there is a bright side to this hell hole we find ourselves in! That would be the wise thing to do but there is nothing wise about NUFC.

  • 40 Jib // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:45 PM

    I have a feeling in me water , I have no evidence to back it , that ‘arry could be the short term solution , it has been said that he’s Ashley’s go to sounding board on footballing matters.
    People thinking that the manager and the board will all be binned at the same time are deluding themselves.
    ‘arry and Sir Les as DoF (a role he currently holds at QPR ) could be a possibility.
    We need someone with a connect to the club and fans who Ashley can trust.

  • 41 JamRec // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:45 PM


    You may be on to something there… I was thinking that any new manager coming in has to go away to Leicester for their first game! Maybe the club will let Mac lose at Leicester then replace him… but that would mean the new manager would have Sunderland as the first game…

  • 42 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:45 PM


    I’ve changed my mind since last year.
    Any protests need to be where the cameras and microphones are…inside the ground.
    Hell’s teeth for Ashley and Sports Direct and leave McClaren alone to tend the team. Then a walk out at half time.
    The players won’t take offence at Ashley’s name ringing round the ground. It might even gee them up.
    Obviously, if they are playing spanking football, people would want to stay and scream them on until the final whistle, before making their point again at full time.
    It punishes cowardice and failure, but would reward success.

  • 43 magscar // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:46 PM

    There are many polarised views on here ( as is normal) but from wherever you once stood or still stand there can only be the one focus now.

    For all the false Armageddons we have somehow skirted round this is it lads and lasses – the Real Thing. Getting this wrong is a game changer, even partly right is unlikely to be enough.

  • 44 stuart no9 // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:46 PM

    how about getting Warnock in till the end of season , at least we’ll go down with a fight if nothing else

  • 45 AncientC // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:47 PM

    Let’s say McClaren earns £1 million per year, that is around £2800 per day.

    If they are going to pay out his compensation anyway, an extra 2 days training is £5600 worth of coaching. Nothing to be sniffed at…

  • 46 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:48 PM

    I wouldn’t be printing leaflets either. People feel thwarted when they are searched at the gates.

    They can’t confiscate your voice.

  • 47 Jib // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:48 PM

    You may have something there
    A new manager would hardly relish a Monday night match away to the League Leaders as his baptism of fire, having said that , is a home derby any better?

  • 48 Rotonda heights // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:50 PM


    could you imagine it, if that didn’t send shockwaves to the odious ashley nothing ever would.

  • 49 wolfshead@toon // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:51 PM


    ‘arry would be an excellent choice as manager for the last ten games the players are all shot now and they need some inspiration something they wouldnt get from the likes of moyes coming in.
    there would be no guarantee of safety under redknapp of course but at least we would have decent football to watch

  • 50 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:51 PM

    There is less polarisation than you might like magscar.

    Bobby B himself pointed out that people inside the ground make the best protesters.

    In fact, I may even end my own boycott for the very purpose.

  • 51 Mag52 // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:51 PM

    To have made no provision for employing a new manager as the situation in the league became more desperate is as negligent as if the Gvnt. had made no provision for a vote to leave the EU in June. Oh……..hang on a minute……

  • 52 Graeme // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:51 PM

    From Sky Sports Pete Graves –
    Steve McClaren remains the Head Coach of Newcastle United and is taking training today as normal. Despite that his future is far from certain. It’s my understanding that following yesterday’s emergency board meeting between Lee Charnley, Graham Carr and Bob Moncur the club are now considering a short list of potential replacements. I also understand there is a long list of people who have shown an interest in the position should it become vacant, but Newcastle United are only considering 2/3 candidates seriously. I also understand there is ONE standout candidate.
    I believe that if Newcastle United receive enough encouragement that an adequate replacement is available then they will look to relieve Steve McClaren of his duties. However, until this replacement is secured, McClaren will continue to look after the first team, as the club look to avoid a repeat of last season when Alan Pardew was allowed to depart the club without a replacement being available.
    I expect the next 48 hours to be critical for the future of both Steve McClaren and Newcastle United. There is still a possibility that McClaren will be in charge for Monday’s trip to Leicester City, but I expect there to be a new Head Coach in the frame by then.

  • 53 stuart no9 // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:53 PM

    Jam — who would you want to replace macca for the rest of the season ,?? a footballing tactical genius , or a hard thug ?? thats why warnock came to mind , he’ll scare the crap out of me . without a doubt.

  • 54 JamRec // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:55 PM

    Anyone got confirmation on Moyes accepting the job? Just seen a post on Newcastle Supporters Worldwide on Facebook claiming Moyes has accepted and Mac is about to be sacked

  • 55 NUFCPaul // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:56 PM

    All I can think of that they’re doing is agreeing terms with McClaren’s successor before announcing his firing. They looked a bit stupid not having a replacement when Pardew left, so maybe they’re trying to avoid a repeat? They better be bloody doing that, although I seriously doubt it. That would require forethought, planning and common sense.

  • 56 JamRec // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:57 PM


    I’d want the hard thug… our players need a kick up the backside! Warnock would give them that but I’m not sure his tactics would suffice! My concern with Moyes is that he might not be able to motivate the players as he failed the last couple of roles he had.

    Ideally I’d want Rafa, he commands respect and forms a solid team! But I don’t think he will come.

  • 57 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:57 PM


    I seriously doubt if a website or an ITK is going to get wind of this first.

  • 58 magscar // Mar 8, 2016 at 12:59 PM


    They can chuck you out but there aren’t enough stewards to do it!

    Walking out at next game if we go behind and McClaren ( or even little more than a clone) is in dugout is pointless. Turning on him vocally might well lose the game but once behind I have no faith we can usually recover anyway. This ought to be the situation that requires no pre-organisation – it will be a visceral reaction by fans that have all finally had enough and are going to let those who hold the fortunes of their club in their hands know about it in no uncertain terms.

    Papers and pundits will call fans for it if we lose but they seem to need a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing (sorry Bob)

  • 59 Jib // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:00 PM

    Why do people assume it’s Charnley who is the board member dithering , Graham Carr was supposed to be the one that plugged his appointment the strongest.

  • 60 AncientC // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:01 PM

    It is very underhanded and ungentlemanly to be agreeing terms with a replacement manager, before sacking the manager that is to be replaced.

    What kind of message does that send out to future candidates? Come to Newcastle, if you’re on a bad run, you will never know if we are talking terms with your replacement or not.

  • 61 BandB // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:01 PM

    yeah mascar,

    I’m sorry I gave you the opportunity to write that.
    I forgot for a moment what your job is.

  • 62 Average_Contents // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:21 PM

    I also understand there is a long list of people who have shown an interest in the position should it become vacant, but Newcastle United are only considering 2/3 candidates seriously. I also understand there is ONE standout candidate.

    One standout candidate.

    Wasn’t shteve the one standout candidate when the idiots appointed him.

    So basically we’re ferked then.

  • 63 jon.c // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:28 PM

    Shortly a statement will be issued from the board .We could not get the required coach in so SMc will continue until the end of the season.ANY BETS

  • 64 goommy // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:33 PM

    Latest news

    Source : @NUFC360
    David Moyes is set to be named Newcastle United’s next manager as they prepare to sack Steve McClaren, reports Metro. #NUFC

    Source : @ChrisDHWaugh
    Our photographer is at #nufc training ground – He saw McClaren arrive, but his car has now left training ground

  • 65 goommy // Mar 8, 2016 at 1:34 PM

    I think we will have new manager within next 48 hours.

  • 66 Jak // Mar 9, 2016 at 12:41 AM

    So what happens in the next few days could be decided by the fans & not fatty if they were mobilised,not going to happen tho.Newcastle fans sat by & allowed this sorry mess to unfold,now they have to take the consequences.

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