Ashley Steps In To Ensure Benitez Stays At Newcastle

There was an interesting  report in the Mail yesterday by Craig Hope in which he says the two transfer meetings Newcastle have had with Rafa Benitez have gone very well and it looks like money will be available to help Rafa build Newcastle’s squad for our return (hopefully) back to the Premier League.

Craig painted a picture of calmness at the club with Rafa completely focused on gaining promotion back to the Premier League and the sooner the better.

Lee Charnley and Mike Ashley

Once promotion is secured then Lee Charnley and his transfer team can go into action and start trying to bring in Rafa’s targets for the summer transfer window.

The Mail report also interestingly enough mentioned that Mike Ashley has sounded out senior officials at the club to ensure there is no breakdown in communications with Rafa Benitez.

Mike is not daft, although we’ve been challenged on that assertion from our readers in the past.


Mike was more than keen to keep Rafa at the club last May and he agreed to all of Rafa’s demands last May and had never been given the credit for that, given we were once again relegated.

While is hasn’t always been plain sailing this season we are top of the league with most points, most wins, most goals scored and the least goals conceded.

That cannot be too bad and the owner knows the fans have formed an extremely strong relationship with Rafa Benitez, whose skills and experience have been on show for all to see over this last year.

His decision to come to Newcastle was a match made in heaven and hopefully Mike Ashley is not daft enough to do anything to harm that.

Rafa has been calling for everybody associated with the club to come together so we can achieve promotion and Mike Ashley seems to have heeded the call and seems to be doing his part too.

We think Mike is far too smart to damage the relationship Rafa has with the club  and the fans and the January upset was probably over-reported and not as bad as it appeared in the press.

Although Rafa was certainly annoyed the club failed to bring in Andros Townsend on that last day of the transfer window – that was clear.

But all may be well at Newcastle with Rafa enjoying his excellent working relationship with Lee Charnley and both men are motivated and work hard to get things done for the club.

Last summer they worked famously together in what was one of the best transfer windows ever for the club and we made £31M in the process.

We all need  to stay United.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

28 comments so far

  • G

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:29 AM

    Comment #1

    To be fair, all the stiring has been done by the press, not the club. The official line on Andros Townsend transfer was that Palace pulled the plug, not us.

  • martoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:39 AM

    Comment #2

    Budge123 from previous – You’re right about it being the last Saturday home game – I hadn’t realised. I’ll miss my ritual of lie in, cooked breakfast, watch a bit of TV and then get ready for the match 🙂

  • Budge123

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:43 AM

    Comment #3

    Yes first of April and no more Saturday games.
    The madness that is modern football!

    6 points this week and it’s so near to being over!

  • martoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:44 AM

    Comment #4

    On topic instead of Ashley “sounding out senior officials at the club to ensure there is no breakdown in communications with Rafa Benitez” why does he not simply speak directly to Rafa? Surely that is the best line of communication!

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:52 AM

    Comment #5

    “The January upset was probably over-reported and not as bad as it appeared in the press”.

    I recall there was a few of us saying this way back when. Similarly with the West Ham thing, it’s not going to happen, we’ll get promoted as champions and then first year top 10.

    It’s a marathon (or snickers) not a sprint guys. Get behind the team and Rafa, we all make mistakes, sadly the Club’s (and personnel) are magnified by the Geordie hating mirror etal.


  • martoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 8:59 AM

    Comment #6

    DubaiMicky – that’s true but something definitely happened because in all Rafa’s press conferences he said he was hoping to bring in a couple of players and as we all know we ended up with none!

  • hibbit

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:01 AM

    Comment #7

    all these unrest stories are from one source our media partner The Daily Mirror

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:05 AM

    Comment #8


    I agree, Palace wouldn’t do a decent deal, and I’m pleased we walked away from it, why should we be held hostage with clubs wanting silly money.
    Of course Rafa says we’re hoping to get players over the line, but unless it’s in the best interests of ALL parties it’s not going to happen.
    Onward and upwards, we’ll be promoted, then let the real buying (and selling) begin.


    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:10 AM

    Comment #9

    I do find it odd that Ashley is still given the benefit of doubt after everything he’s done and still doing

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:15 AM

    Comment #10

    We have to look forward not back, he’s still the owner, he won’t sell unless he makes money on the club, and if he did sell we could end up being a Hull, a scumberland, a Swansea etc.
    Get behind the team, we can at least do something about that, don’t concern yourself about stuff you have and can never have, any effect on.


  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:16 AM

    Comment #11

    stuff you have no, and can never have any, effect on.


    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:19 AM

    Comment #12

    So u are happy for Ashley to do whatever he wants to NUFC and forget about it? And u are happy for Ashley to own the club forever rather than he sell just incase?

    I don’t believe u have to support Ashley in order to be behind the team either

  • Ibizatoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:33 AM

    Comment #13

    Yo…He’s just an honest bloke, trying his best.

    I mean, it’s not like you can’t trust his intentions.

    As always, I find the idea that fans can have no effect on Ashley to be simply ridiculous. The question is and always will be whether fans should, not whether they can.

  • Budge123

    Mar 30, 2017 at 9:54 AM

    Comment #14

    WWS – agree on the history. But I don’t get the still doing bit.

    Kept Rafa check
    Paying him massively over the odds in the Championship

    Invested in the team check
    Spent far more than most and on older players

    Taken a backwards step check
    Lets Rafa and Penfold run things

    Even the January window could be seen as a positive where we haven’t risked unnecessary debt?

    Can a leopard change its spots perhaps not. Can a successful business man learn a lesson I would think so.

    Better Cashly than the nutmeg running Birmingham for example?

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #15

    No, “Better the devil you know” then?

    Personally I’d rather have Rafa and Ashley than Rafa and Ying Tong Chink thanks very much. At least you know where you are with him – and no, I’m not, and never have, defended Ashley.


    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:06 AM

    Comment #16

    Aye mate I agree we have more power than some would have u think

    What about the current asset stripping? Or the club receiving no money from merchandise as it’s filtered to sports direct? Or the advertising for them?

    The transfers are debatable but mostly have still followed the in place strategy and we still made money…and we still decided to ignore what the manager wanted


    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:08 AM

    Comment #17

    Know where we are with him? We have no idea what he’d going to do next Carver proved that

    And why would a Chinese owner be worse than an absent one who doesn’t care about the club?

  • DubaiToon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:12 AM

    Comment #18

    Hi DubaiMicky, I’m also in Dubai? Whereabouts are you located?

  • Ibizatoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:16 AM

    Comment #19

    Yo…It would seem fear trumps power in this case.

    Budge…You do list some improvements. I don’t think anyone has denied them, just pointed out that whilst it was good for the club, it was also essential for the club if it is to return to the PL. The real test hasn’t come yet, hence why I don’t think anyone is calling for any action, simply discussing the what if’s.

    Trying to spin the lack of January transfers as a positive is a bit much though, imo.

    If the discussion is always settled with “it could be worse” then there isn’t a discussion to be had.

    Anyway, have a nice day one and all. Back to work.

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:19 AM

    Comment #20

    DubaiToon I’m in IMPZ, usual hang out for the Toon fans is Goodfellas in Tecom, 25/pint 6-9pm, 20/pint 10-1am.

    We sip during 9-10pm LOL

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #21

    Dubai – you posted :-
    “don’t concern yourself about stuff you have and can never have, any effect on.”

    That is a defeatist attitude if you do not challenge what you think is right – even if you believe you cannot change things. Fight till your last breath if you believe in something.
    Mr Tubbs is a rogue and continues being one.

  • martoon

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #22

    WWSBRD @16 – Not a defence of Ashley but just for accuracy. Regarding the merchandise I thought we buy it via SD who can buy it cheaper with their massive buying power. Yes they probably sell it on to us with a mark up but I believed the profits from sales still go to NUFC or am I wrong?

  • Budge123

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #23

    What is wrong about our transfer policy of buying young as long as it’s not overly done – as it was in the past.

    Have a look at what happens to Sunderland when (if ) they go down. A playing squad with little value. Massive self funded investment needed to get them back and very doubtful that will come. League 1 could be their destination.

    WWS – don’t agree with the asset stripping comment. What does that refer too?

    Rafa signed on after a lot of discussion and debate. He must have been happy with how the club is run.

    But if it’s such a disaster case perhaps the inference is he’s only here for the money?
    I don’t think that for one minute so he must be ok with things?


    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:38 AM

    Comment #24

    Last I heard if u bought anything online it was SD u were buying from only things bought in the club shop at the ground had money going to NUFC. It’s why the website changed to NUFCdirect…might of changed by now but I don’t recall any outrage over it so not sure why it would of. Equally I could of been told wrong but it was NUFC employees who posted the info at the time


    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #25

    Didn’t say there was anything wrong with it mate but it needs to be done properly which it hasn’t been. My point was it’s still there so Ashley hadn’t changed has he?

    Asset stripping is relating to the sale of strawberry place, was a club asset now a sold Ashley asset that the club have nothing to do with (their words). Not sure what else u could call it

    As for Rafa he sees a project with a future and whoever he met with said the same but they’ve lied before. Am not saying they have but so far there is no proof they bought into what they discussed with Rafa for me everything they’ve done is what they had to do because we were relegated…January was a chance to move forward and again they didn’t it was a case of I think uve got enough despite what u say again

    Time will tell but I still doubt Ashley has any ambition beyond being in the PL which won’t be good enough for Rafa and shouldn’t be good enough for us

  • Rotonda heights

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #26

    Dubai Micky

    What’s with the racist comments.

  • hibbit

    Mar 30, 2017 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #27

    for what its worth i think Ashley will take the first offer that matches his get out number and be gone just as quick as he came
    the only way this can be achieved is for us to be back in the prem
    just my thoughts !!!!!1

  • toon kk

    Mar 30, 2017 at 12:16 PM

    Comment #28

    I think MA will be sticking around for the foreseeable future. After all its great advertising for SD. I have no problem with him owning the club providing he has learnt his lesson and runs us correctly. Those who want him gone no matter what should be careful what they wish for.


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