Both Kevin Keegan and Alan Shearer – two Newcastle icons – have been the manager of Newcastle United under owner Mike Ashley and both fell out with the owner and have not a very good opinion of him ever since.
Rafa Benitez is starting to find out that whatever Mike Ashley tells you, he often doesn’t follow through on his promises.
And certainly we expected Newcastle to spend up to £70M net on transfers this summer, and we ended up spending a measly £12M.
That let-down for Rafa Benitez could see him leave the club in the summer or even before that.
Kevin Keegan has said for many years that Mike Ashley is not to be trusted and it keeps turning out to be true.
Kevin Keegan with Chris Hughton and Terry McDermott – circa 2008
Kevin was on an ESPN broadcast about seven years ago, and at that time he had this to say when asked why Geordie fans didn’t like Mike Ashley:
“There’s no trust there because from day one they’ve been misled.”
“Having worked with Mike Ashley and former Managing Director Derek Llambias – you just can’t work with these people.”
“You can’t trust them.” “They tell you one thing, they mean another.”
“I had a phone call for about an hour to buy a player.”
“After I went off the phone, the Board had another conference call together and said ‘right, we don’t want to offer £2M, we offer £1M’, they’ll reject it and that’s it.”
Kevin Keegan lasted only eight months when he took over from the sacked Sam Allardyce in January 2008 when the owner couldn’t persuade his first choice Harry Redknapp to take over.
Alan Shearer lasted even less than that when he took over from assistant Chris Hughton on April 1st, 2009 but failed to save us from relegation in the final eight games he managed.
Alan’s view of Mike Ashley is very much aligned with that of his former manager Kevin Keegan.