Sir John Hall’s Damning Assessment Of Where Newcastle Are – Under Ashley


I was privileged to be at the Newcastle Fairs Cup way back in 1969 in the first leg of the final at St. James’ Park.

That’s when we hammered Hungarian club Ujpest FC 6-2 on aggregate and 3-0 at home.

That’s the last time we won anything at all.

The last local trophy we won was when we took apart Manchester City 3-1 at Wembley in the FA Cup Final in 1955.

I watched the game on TV – with my parents at Wembley for the game – as my favorite player – Jackie Milburn of course – scored with a header in the very first minute of that game.

Sir John Hall – faces the reality of where Newcastle are today

With that context in mind here’s what Sir John Hall has said about the current Newcastle United team under long-term owner Mike Ashley.

And it’s a damning assessment from the former Chairman of the club published in the Chronicle today:

“The harsh reality is that today, more than at any time since 1969, we are probably further away than ever from winning something.”

“And there is no chance of doing so until there is change at the club.”

“Mike came with the best intentions. I firmly believe that.”

“He wanted to globalize Newcastle and to use the club to market his brand of goods in the Far East.”

“But he fell out with supporters pretty quickly and for too many years now, it’s been a holding operation.”

“The club is in limbo. Mike’s had enough and for everyone’s sake, the sooner he moves on the better. That’s my fervent wish for 2019.”

“But it’s imperative whoever he sells to has to have the finances to take this magnificent club forward.”

“It’s not just about coughing up £300M – and from what I hear, there’s nothing yet on the table.”

“But (it’s also) having the resources to change the whole club and buy players who can take us to we’re we should be.”

We are hoping Ashley will sell, but it could be another ruse, so he doesn’t have to spend any money this month.

He can put the club up for sale as many times as he wants to – but if he is asking too much then, Newcastle will never be sold.

That’s what’s happened in the past, and it’s looking like it may happen this time too.

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Comments welcome.


170 comments so far

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:38 AM

    Comment #1

    Rafa’s seemingly the only thing holding the club together. Need to really get behind the lad’s tonight.

    13
  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:40 AM

    Comment #2

    Well he’s got to say he came with good intentions. I firmly believe KK was used to deliberately fall out with the fans and create this hateful atmosphere as an excuse to run us in to the ground.

    8
  • RobLeenio

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:46 AM

    Comment #3

    SJH is life President of NUFC – does that carry any weight or give him any insight into the club or is it just an honorific and an opportunity to wheel him out on official club business?

    On the game tonight, it’ll be difficult to get anything from it. I’m just hoping we’re not on the end of a good shellacking. A draw will be a good result, for sure.

    0
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:47 AM

    Comment #4

    I firmly believe KK knew he himself
    was past his sell by date and came
    to SJP looking for an excuse for a
    claim for unfair dismissal from day one
    to bail himself out of his financial mire
    (he was on the brink of bankruptcy in
    Glasgow)

    2
  • Lovem or Hatem

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #5

    I don’t think Ashley had the best intentions for NUFC. He has the best intentions for SD only

    15
  • chancel be a fine thing

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #6

    Ha ha ha Jib and Jail fighting it out for extremist view of the day.

    6
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #7

    chancel
    the pendulum swings
    😛

    1
  • hibbit

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #8

    Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:47 AM

    Comment #4
    I firmly believe KK knew he himself
    was past his sell by date and came
    to SJP looking for an excuse for a
    claim for unfair dismissal from day one
    to bail himself out of his financial mire
    (he was on the brink of bankruptcy in
    Glasgow)

    jib you know this yet Ashley world renowned legal team failed to pick up on it and lost the case

    33
  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #9

    Jib,
    Yes that would seem to be the view from an ardent Ashley apologist.

    20
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:55 AM

    Comment #11

    Ashley should have due diligence on Keegan
    😀

    1
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #12

    done

    1
  • Rob1971

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #13

    JIb KK would not have been able to do that unless Ashley ran the club properly and didn’t lie through his back teeth (aswas proven in court), KK 2nd spell he had the team playing well at the end of the season with Viduka, Owens & Martin playing well up front together, the highlight was hammering spurs down there place 4:1, you have commented a few times about Keegan the simple fact is the bloke will always be a hero to a vast majority of fans, the complete opposite is true about Ashley

    19
  • Rob1971

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #14

    JIb KK would not have been able to do that unless Ashley ran the club properly and didn’t lie through his back teeth (aswas proven in court), KK 2nd spell he had the team playing well at the end of the season with Viduka, Owens & Martin playing well up front together, the highlight was hammering spurs down there place 4:1, you have commented a few times about Keegan the simple fact is the bloke will always be a hero to a vast majority of fans, the complete opposite is true about Ashley

    4
  • chancel be a fine thing

    Jan 2, 2019 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #15

    I think Ashley came in naive and thought he could have his cake and eat it. Made the popular choice with Keegan and soon learned that managers are troublesome luttle buggers when they don’t get their way. Went for yes men and a cheap reserve coach until Rafa made contact. I expect Ashley is pleased with results, but not the trouble Rafa causes him.
    Will be interesting to see how January goes.

    7
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:00 AM

    Comment #16

    8 Hours 58 Minutes to KO

    2
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #17

    Chancel
    Spot on

    1
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #18

    OK I see we’ve missed out on Pulisic and possibly Almiron, so who are we going to not get next?

    2
  • Zele

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:04 AM

    Comment #19

    Jib,

    I too believe KK was past his best but don’t think he was machlevellian enough to engineer an unfair dismissal.

    5
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:06 AM

    Comment #21

    Tonight’s game will be a tough one as we’ll be playing against 12 men, again!

    2
  • chancel be a fine thing

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #22

    If we get Almiron it will be on the last day of the window and only if our offer is less insulting than the others.
    If it happens before and we pay a decent chunk then it means we’ve been sold.

    3
  • chancel be a fine thing

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #23

    Or Ashley wants to keep Rafa.

    0
  • martoon

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #24

    I think Chancel @15 has it spot on. Ashley wanted to enjoy owning a club sitting with the fans, giving them the manager they wanted while admittedly using it as an advertising tool for SD. However it soon turned sour with alleged threats to him & his family and Keegan resigning claiming constructive dismissal etc etc. and we know the rest.

    3
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #25

    I do get Jibs point but realistically I reckon he jumped at the chance to get back into top class management in the hope and (possibly) belief that he could repeat the glory days he had here.

    Ashley probably assured him of full financial backing as well.

    Sadly we all know how that turned out

    3
  • lochinvar

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #26

    Jib@11
    Ashley should have due diligence on Keegan

    Pity that 52,000 and more, the City of Newcastle, the FA , FIFA ,The U.N. , Ed , Frogs and horses didn’t have due diligence on Mike Ashley

    8
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #27

    martoon
    your timeline is slightly askew
    the threats didn’t come until the falling out with KK

    2
  • DaveD1000

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #28

    Dean Buckle
    ?

    @DeanBuckle
    Follow Follow @DeanBuckle
    More
    Guna be unreal tonight when the tannoy announces #peterkenyon as new owner & it all kicks off when he sacks #Rafa on the spot but then the crowd go wild when a masked man heads to the centre circle & it’s #KevinKeegan & he’s signed Messi & he’s starting! #nufc #NUFCTakeover

    11:05 AM – 2 Jan 2019

    3
  • Jib

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #29

    Loch
    you missed out the World Health Organisation

    3
  • Rotonda heights

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #30

    Nezza

    There will be no havoc. There will be nothing but a bit of grinding of teeth and normal service will be resumed. No boycotts, nada!! Steve Howey must be feeling mortified right now as he becomes this year’s Mick Quinn.

    Jib,

    I actually agree with some points you make but consistently trashing KK is a no go area.That guy gave many of us the best and happiest football watching days of our lives. He would have walked on broken glass to come back
    and he also proved Ashley a liar in court. Yes he was in financial difficulties but that wasn’t the only reason he came back and a bit of respect for KK whilst constantly championing Ashley wouldn’t go amiss. Also to say TV doesn’t really pick up all the SD signage is very mystifying.

    7
  • Zele

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #31

    Martoon,

    Sir John as always maintained the same view over the Ashley years as ‘..Ashley wanted to enjoy owning a club sitting with the fans, giving them the manager they wanted while admittedly using it as an advertising tool for SD..’

    Sir John must be thankful he dodged a financial bullet when he sold up as he wouldn’t have been able to compete financially with the likes of Chelsea, ManU and Man City.

    1
  • geordietom

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #32

    robleenio …

    has the helicopter landed yet mate…

    1
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #33

    martoon
    I reckon that that’s a very good assessment of what happened, he was probably happy enough to take his own insults but not his family’s, for which you couldn’t blame him, doubt if any of us would be happy if it were happening to us.

    Having said that however he had and still has the means to try and improve the situation but it obviously isn’t something he seems to want to do, so the shite will continue until he’s gone.

    1
  • c-dog

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #34

    Jib/Count/Jane

    Once again attempting to create disharmony on the blog.

    13
  • Rob1971

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #35

    If KK was past his best in his 2nd spell with us, what the hell was Joe Kinnear who Ashley brought in to replace him?

    9
  • c-dog

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #36

    Here’s where we stand right now

    1. No take
    2. No transfer budget
    3. Piss poor squad
    4. Top class manager

    11
  • NezzaNUFC

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #37

    RH

    Hmm I don’t about that tbh, I feel this time around fans will have had enough and Mike would be attacked on all four corners by the press and our fans group.

    We all know Mike is a gambler but to this situation though he is holding the short straw and I don’t see any of his PR team coming back on this.

    Only thing that I can think of is giving Rafa the contract and funds he can’t refuse but in the meantime for Mike he’s in a lose lose situation unless he sells up this January.

    Hibbit if that’s true about the silence I would expect calm before the storm scenario soon 😉

    0
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #38

    Zele

    Perhaps not the top sugar daddy driven clubs, but we’d have competed with the rest and more than likely won something by now.

    Wonder if Sir John would have sold knowing what he know’s now?

    1
  • Zele

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:29 AM

    Comment #39

    C-dog,

    1. We don’t know.
    2. We won’t know until after the window closes.
    3. We know some are poor but not all.
    4. We know many agree with you but many don’t.

    6
  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Jan 2, 2019 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #40

    It looks more likely that people might have inquired about Newcastle, maybe done due diligence, but come to the obvious conclusion that it’s not worth £300M!

    …and maybe the fat controller just don’t want to relinquish it all!

    1
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