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Rafa Benitez Is Newcastle´s Only Hope

9:18 am, Thursday, April 7th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 85 Comments

We are hoping against hope that Rafa Benitez can do what is looking increasingly like a miracle now – and that is to save Newcastle United from the drop.

If that happens and he is either not offered the Spain National manager job in the summer, or is offered it and turns it down to stay at Newcastle, then we will be back in business big time.

But everything has to line up  like that for Rafa Benitez to stay at Newcastle.

He´s too good a manager and in too much demand to stay on if we are relegated and manage a Championship club.

rafa benitez arrives at st james pk

Rafa Benitez and Newcastle
Could have been a match made in heaven

So if we do down it is almost certain (only 99% certain so there´s still a chance) he will leave and Newcastle will be back where we were in May 2009 and back in the oblivion of England´s second division where we get £20M from the league every season.

If that happens then Newcastle will lose a lot of fans – some in Newcastle and England because they will simply give up and end their pain until we can get back into the Premier League.

But for fans like us away from home base in places like America, it will be more difficult to stay in touch because we do not get the games on TV in the Championship.

So if we are relegated – and it´s looking more and more certain with every game we don´t win – things will be very tough for the club.

But even more so for the lifeblood of Newcastle United – the long suffering fans.

The best thing the club can do, as we pointed out yesterday, is to quickly appoint a top manager like David Moyes in the summer who can then bring in the players he wants and start preparing to get us promoted straight back to the Premier League.

But we are not holding our breath with the way the club has been run this last year or two – and we think there is no chance at all that Newcastle will suddenly become a well-run club this summer with lots of initiative, verve and ambition.

In short – everything we haven´t had for some time now.

As Alan Shearer has rightly pointed out – the club is a mess from top to bottom – and in business believe us, it´s always very difficult if not impossible for those who get a business  into a mess to get them out of it.

Unless Mike Ashley brings in some very good people to run the club – including a top manager like Moyes as one example – we could be down in the wilderness for a number of seasons.

Newcastle United Football Club has been destroyed by these guys running the club – and Ashley should step up to the plate and start fixing things in the summer and stop screwing the Newcastle fans.

Excuse my language.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Financial Fair Play · Financials · Prayer · Premier League

85 responses so far ↓

  • 1 AncientC // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:27 AM

    Come forth ye heathens, worship at the altar of Rafa! He has won the champions league you know.

    Oh omnipotent Rafa, bestow great Mercy upon us.

  • 2 beermonkey // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:35 AM


    maybe we could make a couple of sacrifices at the alter

    there is a few on here worthy of being sacrificed

  • 3 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:50 AM

    Explain your comment on the previous thread of why it is great to be this close to disaster?

  • 4 geordie157 // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:53 AM

    Tadic and Mane will cause a lot of problems for our useless defence, keep those two quiet and we have a chance.

    Southampton are also a side we never beat

  • 5 John Akomfrah // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:57 AM

    i only glance at the blog in the hope of seeing
    ” fat greedy get sells up”

  • 6 geordie157 // Apr 7, 2016 at 9:59 AM

    Could Rafa manage Spain and us? It rarely works but a few have done it with some success.

    I can’t see it happening but Rafa may end up staying, he’s in a position where he could say I’ll stay if….then it’ll be up to club to match those demands. Big promotion bonus, full control of transfers etc

    If he goes then the club need to find a young ambitious manager….struggling to think of any who won’t already be in the prem a la Howe and Dyche. We could get Rodgers in I suppose

  • 7 Blackley and Brownlie // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:06 AM

    Ed says, “The £129M was made up of him covering a £100M debt he didn´t know about when he coughed up £135M for Newcastle in 2007 and then Chairman Chris Mort found out about the debt in September of 2007 when going more thoroughly through the books.”

    It is highly misleading and to say Ashley was covering a debt of £100m he didn’t know about.

    I agree with Jib about the loan. Ed’s comments are odd. It’s as if a loan is a major impediment to a sale. It would be unusual if a club didn’t have borrowings.

  • 8 Blackley and Brownlie // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:07 AM

    Predictive text. How do I turn it off?

    It is highly misleading of Ed to say …

  • 9 AncientC // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:08 AM

    You have got to be kidding, if you think we can just turn to Brendan Rodgers if we get relegated. Rodgers could expect the Tottenham job, if Man Utd poached Pocchettino.

    Rodgers and his attacking brand of football, will not be short of offers.

  • 10 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:08 AM

    Ur flowery language aside u are happy we’ve fought relegation consistently under Ashley?

    What are u on about kidda

  • 11 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:11 AM

    Blackley and Brownlie //
    Predictive text. How do I turn it off?

    You could try running the cold tap over your device

  • 12 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:14 AM

    Very much like his dimwitted sidekick he says things that he doesn’t mean to wind people up and has no intention of explaining. Just like when he said Mclaten should definitely not be sacked if he continually failed to meet his targets.

  • 13 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:20 AM

    Yeah bud I think ur probably right. Not sure any football fan would be happy to see their team looking down year on year

  • 14 lesh // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:28 AM

    Yer ‘avin a larf Ed? Quickly appoint a manager? Quickly??

    The Club showed last year that it doesn’t do quickly. They like to take things slowly and methodically, thoroughly undertaking background research into likely appointees before they make a complete balls of things!

  • 15 beermonkey // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:31 AM


    some1 posted a stat last night that we had been beaten by 3 or more goals 9 times this season

    i am all for an attack minded manager coming in but if there anything like martinez it wont do us any good
    to be fair to rogers swans were pretty balanced
    but i think at liverpool it was a bit more of we will score more than you

  • 16 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:34 AM

    What I meant was
    Ashley had such a huge ego and high opinion of his own abilities and demonstrated such a sneering contempt for football people’s business acumen (some of it justified it has to be said).
    It was never going to be a short term or easy conversion for such a man to the realities of League football.
    Even when he admitted he’d made mistakes he made them again.
    We’ve only once ever had an owner that thinks big and that was SJH motivated by a desire to make money out of the club which had never been Ashley’s motivation.
    Even Ashley hadn’t realised when he took the club over , the wealth that would come from the PL (Chelsea got £100 million in June) and now he has changed from NUFC being his sideline to something much more significant.
    The predicament we are in has caused him to have a complete rethink .
    We will see the fruits of this in the Summer regardless of relegation or not.

  • 17 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:39 AM

    An interesint piece on SkySports.

    Newcastle players to feature:


    Sissoko is actually our highest rated player. That in itself tells it’s own story.

    Mind, with our injuries, and only players who have played 15 games this term being counted, I wonder whether we actually have had better performers (based on an average of games played)?

  • 18 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:44 AM

    Exactly what rethink has Ashley had?

  • 19 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:46 AM

    How do you know he has had a rethink, all he has done is took a chance on one last throw of the dice by appointing a top manager. As for making money out of the club, it was always his intention to splatter the club with SD and get world wide exposure, and due to the fact we’ve had four relegation battles and a season with out world wide expousre he’s not even managed that very successfully.

  • 20 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:47 AM

    And another SS article.

    It shows the great escape can be done, although, what they fail to mention is that previously only one club has been able to pull away each season, not two and only 3 teams have done it from the position NUFC are in.

  • 21 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:52 AM

    Until the last months a strong-willed independent minded personality like Benitez wouldn’t have been countenanced anywhere near NUFC.
    Rafa isn’t doing this to pass time until a proper job comes up.
    He’s brought his full coaching crew and already has reorganised Benton beyond recognition.
    One of RB’s favourite buzz words is “proyecto” and I think he sees us as his next project.

  • 22 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 10:58 AM

    Have we travelled back a year?

    I thought Ashley had seent he light prior to that fateful West ham game? I thought we were due to “see the fruits of this” the Summer past?

    What makes this turning point any different from the previous ones?

    “All I say is, there is a bank account, when you have emptied it, it’s empty, don’t come crying to me for more money…..”

    “Virtually nothing now. They have emptied it”

    Aye, he sounds like he’s prepared and ready to go and make us great, no matter what happens.

    “Eventually, we will have some good times again.”

  • 23 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:01 AM

    Out of interest, who are we crediting with signing up Rafa?

    Mike or the board?

  • 24 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:03 AM

    Ur quite happy to ignore the interview he gave confirming nothing has changed

    On Rafa he can walk away if we go down, he had nothing to lose by taking our job and he is a working manager. We could be his project if we stay up but he didnt join us because of Ashley

  • 25 Termijn // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:03 AM

    My prediction for our remaining games
    (A) Southampton L
    (H) Swansea W
    (H) Man City W
    (A) Liverpool D
    (H) Palace W
    (A) Villa W
    (H) Tottenham D

    Points 14
    Total 39

    Little bit optimistic I know but I feel like once we get a win under Rafa we’ll click into gear.

  • 26 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:08 AM

    The Telegraph said:-
    Manuel García Quilón (Benitez’ agent) approached Mike Ashley.
    To his credit Rafa refused to talk to Charnley until McClaren’s situation had been sorted , then things moved rapidly.

  • 27 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:08 AM

    Rumour I heard Rafa’s people approached them

  • 28 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:13 AM

    JIb….Thank you. So we’re crediting Benitez and his agent then?

    Ashley himself has said he doesn’t, nor is he equipped to make such decisions. Not a direct quote, of course.

  • 29 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:15 AM

    And he still wouldn’t be anywhere near NUFC had we have been in Bournemouths league position now and the same again this time next year. By telling us this you’re admitting that we have been ran in entirely the wrong way yet you have wholeheartedly supported him every step of the way even saying you personally enjoy relegation battles or sailing this close to the edge???

  • 30 Termijn // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:16 AM

    How I think our rivals will go
    (A) Palace D
    (H) Sunderland L
    (A) Arsenal L
    (H) Man Utd L
    (H) Watford D
    (A) Everton D

    Points 3
    Total 34

    (H) Leicester L
    (A) Norwich W
    (H) Arsenal L
    (A) Stoke L
    (H) Chelsea D
    (H) Everton W
    (A) Watford L

    Points 7
    Total 34

    (H) Norwich D
    (H) Everton L
    (A) Arsenal L
    (A) Man Utd L
    (A) Newcastle L
    (H) Stoke L
    (A) Southmapton L

    Points 1
    Total 35

    Newcastle 39
    Palace 35
    Sunderland 34
    Norwich 34

    Again perhaps slightly optimistic but I cant see many of our rivals piucking up that many points with the run ins they have, especially Palace who are looking very average at the moment

  • 31 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:17 AM

    Yo….Let us hope then, that our remaining opponents are as helpful as Rafa and his agent, and give Mike a call to let him know how to get the job done.

  • 32 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:26 AM

    Fingers crossed after all they owe us for gifting them so many points, they wouldn’t be where they are today if we weren’t so charitable

  • 33 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:29 AM

    Ashley said he was less “hands on” and had pulled out of the day to day stuff and transfers etc.
    But I would imagine he told Charnley to do whatever was neccesary to sign Benitez including binning Graham Carr’s pal McClaren.

  • 34 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:41 AM

    Do I regret getting into football? The answer is yes.

    “I have had tonnes of fun in it but I haven’t been able to make the difference I wanted to in football.

    “I wanted to help Newcastle, I wanted to make it better, that’s what I wanted to do. I haven’t seemed to have had that affect.”

    “I have virtually nil affect on Newcastle United, in reality, because I only pick the board.

    “To get a football club to be the best it can be, you have to get the sun, the moons and the stars to align perfectly.

    “But there is negativity around me as an individual when it comes to Newcastle, so the best thing was to make sure it was on solid ground and then step back and get them to self-manage Newcastle.

    “Create a board, get the board to appoint the manager, put the manager on the board as well and then not interfere.

    “I don’t know what players they sign, I don’t know what team they are going to pick on a Saturday.

    “All I say is, there is a bank account, when you have emptied it, it’s empty, don’t come crying to me for more money.

    “They have had a proper go at it this season, I think everyone can agree with that, but the results haven’t been ideal.”

  • 35 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:46 AM

    “I don’t really want to have any influence in football to be honest. Looking after Sports Direct is more than a full time job.”

  • 36 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:52 AM

    Yup that interview implied a change in big Mike

  • 37 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 11:53 AM

    Still trying to come to terms with the Norwich defeat , seriously depressed and my ulcer has flared up again . This season’s failure could be the beginning of our demise unless Rafa has decided to stay for the long haul and continue restructuring next season. I personally don’t think he will walk away if he gets a free rein to manage things his way as he must realise the potential here if he can put together a team that wins.

  • 38 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:12 PM

    I don’t think anyone at the club or anyone on here could honestly have foreseen the club ending up in this mess. Since our last relegation we have somehow managed to stay in thePL with the minimum of investment and have now become a profitable club.

    Ashley could and shoulda done many things differently and with proper football people around him during his tenure but this season we were allowed to spend a good chunk of the clubs proceeds, not before time, but other clubs have spent far less and done a lot better. Once he sanctioned the spending and allowed McC to be employed then he had played his hand for the season and sat back and left it to his subordinates to get on with it. I don’t have any sympathy for him but he must be thinking he has had a rotten run of luck.

  • 39 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:16 PM


    Its actually crazy to think that we also bid for Berahino and if we had have signed him that would have been over 100 million in a season !

    With that level of spending they could have a great manager at the start of the season Klopp , Benitez etc could have been tempted no bother !

    I just can’t believe we decided to go with Mclaren if we were going to spend all that money !! Crazy just crazy

  • 40 hibbitt // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:18 PM

    famous last words

    “we’re gonna make our own luck from now on”

  • 41 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:24 PM

    Also take it we have no left back available again this weekend?

    Should be putting Lascalles or Mbemba out on that position and just have them defending or even go 3 at the back and have Townsend and Janmaat as wing backs ?

    I can just see what Southampton will do before I even watch the game Mane or Long will be on the right hand side constantly hounding the left back and Pelle will be all over Colo like a rash

  • 42 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:30 PM

    LCBP…… I agree but even with McClaren as coach and the money spent we should have been capable of mid table. For some reason the players are not the right blend to be able to gel into a winning team.

  • 43 Toonfan8 // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:30 PM

    we don´t need to sell Wijnaldum if we go down, he can go on loan, I think anybody in the premier league would want him…but we should be fighting now and thinking what to do then, if we are relegated…we have to fight and we have to use best players available now…
    that is our best line up, maybe De Jong in for Perez or Sissoko, but no to Cisse, Taylor, Anita…

  • 44 Toonfan8 // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:31 PM

    oh and I forgot Lascelles, he was our best defender, so put him there instead of Collo….

  • 45 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:31 PM

    No bettyswallocks they couldn’t. They thought we’d be tenth to fifteenth with maybe a quarter final to say they tried but this is exactly why we are where we are. If they had hired a manager capable of breaking the top six then failure would have been finishing tenth to fifteenth. When they hire a manager to do that then failure is relegation.
    It was not rotten luck that they waited patiently for a failed Championship manager to be sacked while Klopp, Tuchel and FDB waited for the riches of the PL. It was not rotten luck that has allowed an elderly scout and a clerk choose the players and neglect vital areas, it was negligence of the highest order. We were making our own luck from last season and this is exactly what they made.

  • 46 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:35 PM

    Mr Bunga Party

    Like so many on here you have a very selective memory.

    You slag off McClaren now.


    Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Jun 6, 2015 at 12:50 PM

    For me Mclaren is a massive improvement on Pardew no point in even mentioning Carver in that same breadth !!

    We have a lot of technical players used to playing a pass and move game usually in a 433 system under Pardew we did play this a few times and had success but he could not help himself and would always go back to 442 hoofball whenever he got the chance !!

    At Derby and Twente Mclaren played a 433 with pass and move football which if he even brings that surely it should represent at least a 20 or 30% improvement in some of our existing players seeing as they will be playing a system that they are used to and prefer playing ?

    A backline of Janmaat , Colo , Dummett/Saylor and Haidara is actually not that bad and if we pressed higher up the field and kept the ball better it would mean they are not under as much pressure

    I hope he brings in his own coaches though , I guess we will keep Carver and Stone but they might be useful when we need someone to go put the cones out or get the Greggs at lunch time …….

  • 47 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:45 PM

    I wasnt against McClaren coming in last summer and now I think it was a utter disaster…thats not short memory thats seeing what happened. McClaren was pathetic, on par with Carver and worse than Pardew and Hoots (both of which had worse hands that McClaren was dealt)

  • 48 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:46 PM

    Jail……… We can only hope that this disastrous season has finally driven the lesson home that making do with failed personnel to run a big football institution with huge expectations from it’s huge fan base is not the answer. If they convince Rafa to stay and allow him to make the necessary changes then I assume Charnley will administrate and Carr will play a bit part scouting role with Rafa having final say.

    They say you pay for you’re learning but we won’t know whether Ashley has learnt until next season.

  • 49 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:49 PM


    I still stand by that Mclaren would be an improvement on Pardew but happy to admit that I was wrong that he would do well with the team as of June 2015!! Pardew is only a couple of points ahead of us despite having a fully fit team for most of the season and being allowed to pick his own players !!

    At that time there was no hint that we would be spending near enough 100 million and if that figure was known then we should have been looking at getting a higher calibre of manager than Mclaren ! He still should have done a lot better with the team but its been a disaster this season from the very start !

    Happy to admit I got it wrong Jib which is something you should start doing as you seem to go hiding when proved wrong……….

  • 50 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:49 PM


    I wasnt against McClaren coming in last summer and now I think it was a utter disaster

    Me Too.

    But for some reason you seem to think Charnley and Ashley (you know the guy who knows nowt about football) should have foreseen all this !

  • 51 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:53 PM

    Wow wow wow I wasnt against McClaren coming in but that was because of my incredibly low expectations, I saw him as the best of a very poor bag. I couldnt change the aim of the club because those two set it

    If I give u the option of which gun am going to shoot u in the head with u may have a preference but its my decision to use a gun

    Ashley and the tea boy could of and should of aimed higher and gotten a manager in the Rafa bracket then

  • 52 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:55 PM

    It just seems everything the club tries to do it manages to make an arse of it !

    Buy cheap sell high we dont even buy players that cheaply now compared to other teams ! Have not managed a decent transfer fee for a player since Cabaye and even then we got less than we should have !

    Have youngsters who get a game do well and then are shunted straight away the second a senior player becomes fit so there is no chance of bringing through the player to sell on for a fee from the academy !?

  • 53 hibbitt // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:56 PM

    so many on here say McClaren was Carrs choice

  • 54 midweek weekend // Apr 7, 2016 at 12:58 PM


    I think perez will definitely be sold spurs will be sniffing about he could go for over 12 million didn’t he cost less than 1 million, be a huge shame to lose him but that’s what relegation does

  • 55 martoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:01 PM

    Jib – I think it’s fair to say that McClaren was not most people’s first choice (except Catchy 🙂 ) but most, including myself, thought he would be an improvement on Pardew. However history has shown us all to be wrong – thinking about it I think McClaren’s brand of football is nice to watch but I think his man management skills are poor – something Pardew was supposedly pretty good at. Maybe we need a hybrid of Pardew & McClaren 🙂
    P.S. I haven’t seen Tuff around the blog for a while – have we scared him off?

  • 56 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:03 PM

    There’s an interesting point.

    Should we expect those charged with running the club to be able to foresee things better than the fans? Too right we should.

    It’s their profession. Hence why it’s so important to get in the right people, for the right reasons.

    Anyway, let’s go back to berating fans for their lack of knowledge, whilst showing unwavering support for our board…and their lack of knowledge.

  • 57 STB // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:03 PM

    We will certainly lose some paying spectators in the championship but no fans, as the “fanatics” are like the ones who were there when we were struggling with ardiles’ team in the 2nd division and had previously put up with the dross served up by jack charlton and a few other legendary toon names – tony Cunningham, bobby shinton, frank Pingel who unlike Fumaca actually got regular games…

  • 58 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:03 PM

    Jib…….. Ashley will be loathe to sack the whole board and start from scratch as he seems to need someone like Charnley that he feels comfortable with. Let’s hope he dilutes his input and allows a football person to make the important decisions. I also thought McC was an upgrade on Pardew and Charver only to be proved horribly wrong. To wait so long to replace him with a proper manager is unforgivable however and will be the reason for our relegation.

  • 59 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:06 PM

    martoon…If I may point something out. You’ve been riding Tuff for his pursuit of certain posters, but now seem to be doing the same to him.

    He’s not here, not doing anything, yet you mention him.

    Easy trap to fall in to, when trying to provide some blog balance.

    On McClaren, I think he was seen as an improvement on Carver, not so much Pardew. He was supposed to bring a better style of football than Pardew mind.

  • 60 LGFUAD21 // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:10 PM

    Ridiculous article.

    Being realistic, we couldnt keep Forster on our bench. I remember him in that pre-season looking shaky and I think most agreed at the time that Krul was the better option.

    The article seems to suggest that we wouldnt be in this mess had we kept him but that’s not true.

    It was him or Krul and one had to go. Both have had injuries of late.

  • 61 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:13 PM

    Betty…Is it that he’s comfortable with Lee?

    An interesting article you’ve probably read before.

    “Indeed, Dave Forsey, Sports Direct’s chief executive, told us his “primary function” was “to protect Mike”.”

    I suppose that does offer Ashley some comfort.

  • 62 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:25 PM

    LGF…It is a silly point, that for some reason keeps doing the rounds.

    It even says it in the article, he wanted first team football, at the time Krul edged him.

    Yes, it was a shame we couldn’t have held on to him, but it would have been viewed as silly to let Krul go at the time too.

    For all the things the club have got wrong, this shouldn’t even be mentioned.

    Despite our current injury problem, goalkeepers are one of the few good things at this club.

  • 63 LGFUAD21 // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:26 PM


    I wasnt against Mcclaren either.

    Despite his terrible end to his time at Derby. He also turned that club around.

    Before him they were a lower mid table mediocre team. He got them playing some great football and challenging for promotion from the Championship which is not an easy task by any means,

    I was talking to a coach at Parma once at he interestingly said about English Football

    “I think the sacking culture is as bad in Italian football. However, if a coach gets fired in England they are written off. In Italy they don’t. In fact history shows that the best Italian managers around now are generally the ones that have failed multiple times at smaller clubs earlier in their career. The difference in Italy is that we see that as experience”

    Very interesting point that no doubt was in my mind when we appointed Mcclaren. At the time I kind of sucked up all the positive messages from the club.

    The reality for me is that I had a nasty feeling from the minute Cabella left and Thauvin came. Not quite a relegation feeling but certainly a “Somethings off”

    Objectively I think Steve’s mistakes were the following:
    – Too soft to correct the clear attitude problems in our squad
    – Wanted to only play a certain way which was not possible with the psychological scars of previous seasons
    – Too much belief in what he was doing to change.
    – Too slow to react.

    I also feel that all of the head coach nonsense undermined his authority. What Newcastle described as Head Coach is not unique, most English clubs will work the same way regardless of what the media say. So they might as well have branded him a manager.

    I think Steve did well at Derby because he was a big fish in a small pond. In the premier league he was not. He gets a lot of praise for his time at Man U. Maybe his mild manners balanced Fergie’s tenacity.

    It’s a shame because we would not have been here if Benitez came in the summer (I know he was at Real)

    We wouldve picked up the odd few more points and wouldve been mayeb languishing around 16th and he wouldve ensured we got a defender. I think his training methods wouldve also prevented injuries in some cases.

  • 64 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:26 PM

    Ashley likes to be photographed next to Churners because of his gawd damned ugliness, Keith Bishop tells Mikey he doesn’t look as bad when pictured next to LC.

  • 65 LGFUAD21 // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:27 PM


    Aye. We’ve always had decent keepers.

    I worried about that when Woodman left as he seemed to do a good job with Krul.

    Hindsight is a gift and all that. We knew Forster was a talented lad but I dont think anyone predicted him turning into one of the leagues best (except those Genius Scouts at Southampton)

  • 66 Jail for Ashley // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:28 PM

    I can catergorically state that I was dead set against a failed,sacked Championship manager coming anywhere near the club.

  • 67 martoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:28 PM

    Ibiza- I wasn’t riding Tuff at all – I merely pointed out that imo (and some other blog users) he crossed the line with a couple of his comments that he should have apologised for.
    The only reason I asked was I actually like Tuff”s contribution especially his xxx out comments and I noticed they had been missing for a while now.

  • 68 LGFUAD21 // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:32 PM

    I wanted Pardew gone but I was willing to give him a little credit for getting us on those runs.

    We’ve seen a season of rubbish this year. At least under Pardew he was capable of putting those runs together to keep us relatively safe.

    I am glad that his Palace are free falling though. Nothing against Palace but hated the way the media made all Newcastle fans out to be deluded morons for hounding him out. We all know what you’ll get with Pardew.

    – Boring, ugly football
    – winning runs
    – loosing runs.

    it was always extremes. Never just a gentle pace of WDLWDL but LLLLLL or WWWDDD

  • 69 LGFUAD21 // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:37 PM

    On the last article.

    I wouldve thought that now would be a better time to buy Newcastle should we go down than before.

    The relegation devalues the club especially in light of the TV revenues. BUT for a dedicated, smart owner this could actually be a great time to pick up one of the last remaining sleeping giants of English football.

    Championship clubs are far more reliant on matchday revenues. That combined with Newcastle recent relegation (which will mean more TV than other championship clubs and more revenue) plus parachute payments means in the next 2 years we are in a unique position financially to get back into the Premier League (not saying it wont be difficult, but on paper we have the potential to blitz it with some smart recruitment).

    Once we’re up, if we can stay up, we could be making huge profit for and owner in a matter of 3 years.

    It’s counter intuitive but we’re actually a better proposition down than we are stable in the Premier League.

  • 70 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:43 PM

    Ibiza……If Ashley is to be believed then he allowed the board to spend the money, choose the players and appoint the manager. None of the decisions have resulted in a successful team and it remains to be seen whether Rafa will stay on now that they have all surely realised the previous model has failed them.

    Ashley needs loyal , obedient, sycophantic people around him but surely he has realised at last that a proper manager is required to manage all football matters which means Charnley could still have a role as administrator/ arse licker.

  • 71 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:43 PM

    martoon…My apologies then. I had thought there had been more than just a couple of comments from you towards him the past little while.

    I’m sure you can understand my confusion when you addressed the post to Jib, who clearly Tuff has a problem with and said “have we scared him off?”

  • 72 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:48 PM

    betty…I imagine you guessed this already, but you lost me with “If Ashley is to be believed”.

    Which bit? He wants us to win something? That he wished he never got involved? That there’s virtually no money left? That he doesn’t get involved in the decision making?

    I suppose we’re leading up to another “Let’s wait and see what he does next” moment.

    Let’s not forget, this wont be the first time we’ve heard that mistakes have been made and learnt from. Why for a minute does anyone think that another “re-structure” would bring anything different than what has come before?

  • 73 Jib // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:51 PM

    Amazingly prophetic from Jail for Ashley

    This was before we’d even appointed McClaren

    Jail for Ashley // May 21, 2015 at 11:17 PM

    Nothing official on McLaren sacking, only the Telegraph saying it. The same paper that reckon after Mikey got his fingers stung the first time round and couldn’t believe that none of the players were on relegation clauses still don’t have relegation clause this time we’re going down.

  • 74 WWSBRD // Apr 7, 2016 at 1:52 PM

    On paper he should of been alright for us, what they wanted atleast which was a steady eddy who wouldn’t rock the boat, but he wasn’t the right man to do it. I think there is plenty to point to as to just why he failed, tbh I don’t think he did much right

    He will go back to the championship and be alright with someone I imagine

  • 75 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:01 PM

    Ibiza………. If Ashley is to be believed on the board choosing the players, spending the money and employing the manager was the point I’m making.
    He’s obviously sore and understandably so that the new players and new manager did worse than the previous mob despite a record spend.

    If he continues to allow the club to spend the money it generates then we obviously need someone more qualified to spend it There will be more Tv money available to spend next season and a good manager to spend it wisely is the best we can hope for.

  • 76 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:10 PM

    Betty…I think this comes down to me not liking to put limitations on what I can hope for and having to have an element of faith in Ashley.

    Let’s see what Asheys biggest factor is. Is he outraged at the money wasted by those he employs, in which case, they wont be near the pot again, or will he, decide that they’re his best bet…for whatever reason, clearly not to do with football.

    Many people claim he is a loyal man. That may well be true, but they have to be doing something right as far as he’s concerned, or they’d be gone.

  • 77 martoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:19 PM

    Ibiza – no problem – I may have difference of opinions (arguments 🙂 ) with posters on the blog from time to time but I don’t hold grudges especially as it’s only a football blog when all said & done. I enjoy reading contributions from all including Tuff, Ian toon & Jib.

  • 78 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:24 PM

    martoon…That is fair enough. I may be wrong, it’s just that I don’t seem to recall ever seeing you pass judgement on either Jib, or Ian, as he’s been mentioned too.

    Just Tuff. Maybe it’s as simple as you think he should know better.

    Anyway, whats worse than their bickering? You and I discussing the merits of such bickering.

  • 79 martoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:25 PM

    Anyway to NUFC matters – any early contributions to the team against Southampton – If Colo plays I think I’d play Mbemba at LB and I’d like to see Cisse & Mitro up front together – we know we can’t defend so we may as well go for goals and hopefully outscore them – I can’t help but feel Forster will play a blinder against his old team to prove a point!

  • 80 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:27 PM

    Ibiza…….. You don’t have to have any faith in Ashley as long as he allows the club’s money to be re invested in the team.

    He must realise by now followng his statement on planet alignment etc. being required, that a football club needs football minded people to find a winning formula.
    Charnley doesn’t pick or coach the team but is responsible for allocating the transfer funds and prioritising player signings or lack thereof and that has cost us dearly.
    Carr choosing the players without any plan to structure a team from his choice of players is also a failed system.
    Surely they must have learnt enough during 8 yrs. of making all the mistakes to allow Rafa or someone similar manage the club with a strategy to win football matches.

  • 81 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:32 PM

    betty…If I don’t need to have faith in Ashley, how come your post is littered with “ifs”, “as long as” and “he must”?

    All of those points aren’t new, other than Rafa is now in the mix. There has been no suggestion yet that he would stay if we’re relegated.

    A strategy to win football matches. What a novel idea. Perhaps someone can call Mike and suggest it.

  • 82 martoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:35 PM

    Ibiza – last post on the subject – if you dig far enough back I’ve had one or two rows with Jib/Jeff in the past but admittedly not recently – I can’t recall any with Ian but I only mentioned them in an attempt to show that I enjoy contributions from all sides of the blog.

  • 83 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:42 PM

    Martoon…Consider it put to bed.

  • 84 bettyswallocks // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:46 PM

    Ibiza…….. what do you suggest then to give us a better chance to win football matches , as that is all I and most other fans care about. I don’t care who owns the club if we win

    Relating every negative result back to the owner becomes a bit too obsessive for me. It doesn’t seem to happen at other clubs so maybe you should start a Mike Ashley hatred society. I’m sure you will be more fulfilled. This season has been a disaster and very distressing but it can’t be just Ashley to blame as you want to continually insinuate.

  • 85 Ibizatoon // Apr 7, 2016 at 2:54 PM

    Betty…Far from it.

    Is it not you that has been saying that after 8 years it is Ashley that should have seen the light?

    He hires the board. If he can’t get that right, we won’t have a good chance to win football matches, which is all you care about.

    I’m not sure where your objection comes from.

    All I’ve said is that I don’t understand where faith in Ashley comes from. You say I don’t need it, but then list all of the things that Ashley might have going on in his head. Clearly change is reliant on Ashley?

    I’ve not said it’s all down to Ashley. What I’m saying is he’s the man who can fix it, or leave and allow someone else a crack at it.

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