So What Exactly Is Going On At Newcastle – Where’s Ashley?


Think back to almost three years ago when Rafa Benitez first arrived on Tyneside (Friday, March 11, 2016) and he wanted to be the manager of Newcastle and thought he could save us from relegation with 10 games to play.

Fans were ecstatic, and the word was that we have got the man we need as the Newcastle manager and even Mike Ashley cannot screw this one up.

Surely not!

Well, almost three years later we are struggling against relegation for the second season running after being relegated and immediately promoted in the first year under Rafa’s management.

But Rafa seems like a frustrated man on Tyneside these days and who can blame him?

Ashley has run the club since promotion on a financial shoestring, and Rafa has been forced to do business in the bargain basement for players.

Rafa Benitez at the Fulham game

That shows up in the class of the players we have and the team we have.

There is no problem with the characters of our players – they fight like crazy for the club.

But we are just 2 points above the drop zone after 21 games played.

PosTeamGamesGDPoints
10West Ham38-352
11Watford38-750
12Crystal Palace38-249
13Newcastle38-645
14Bournemouth38-1445
15Burnley38-2240
16Southampton38-2039
17Brighton38-2536
18Cardiff38-3534
19Fulham38-3726
20Huddersfield38-5416

And that league position could look a lot worse in early February once we have played the next four league games.

Here are those games and we have that FA Cup replay at Blackburn between the Chelsea and Cardiff fixtures.

Sat 12 Jan   Chelsea vs Newcastle           5:30pm
Sat 19 Jan   Newcastle vs Cardiff           3:00pm
Tue 29 Jan   Newcastle vs Man City          8:00pm
Sat  2 Feb   Tottenham vs Newcastle         5:30pm

There are three top six sides in there, and we have lost every one of our seven games against top-six opposition so far this season.

And there has been silence on the transfer front, and we are almost one third the way through the January transfer window and as far as we know the absent owner – Mike Ashley – is still on his Christmas vacation.

Why is the owner not taking some responsibility and action on behalf of the club – given the dire position we are in?

He is said to be locked in takeover talks which is one reason why he will not loosen the purse strings for Rafa in this January window.

But he hasn’t done that in the last two January transfer windows either.

Even in our promotion season, he refused to spend any money in January 2016 to ensure promotion even though Rafa wanted two players brought in.

He took another risk with Newcastle.

Newcastle United at the moment seems to be like a ship adrift in the ocean with no destination known – and no captain on board to steer the ship.

It’s not a good situation to be in, and this is the kind of disaster scenario we dreaded seems to be happening.

If Ashley doesn’t support Rafa this month and Newcastle is not sold before the summer, then Rafa Benitez will move to pastures new to pastures new when his contract runs out at the end of June.

He’s suffered enough under Ashley at Newcastle.

It really is a shame for the club and everybody associated with it.


170 comments so far

  • catchy in norway

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:08 PM

    Comment #41

    SO the worst you have me saying is fag, and its not like i say you stupid fag, homos should die,, i said Fag P, a play on on Map P, the same way people have called me cathy, the same way i say Jail is Gail, Lesh is Leah..

    lesh

    Nov 6, 2018 at 2:12 PM

    Comment #3
    Catchy

    You’ve blown your cover with your last post and were you around during the last war, I could imagine you collaborating with the Nazis.

    5

    Black and white armpit

    Sep 29, 2018 at 4:57 PM

    Comment #302
    Catchy kill yourself, nobody on this blog would miss you… seriously.

    2

    i know which is worse

    9
  • Ffsashley

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:09 PM

    Comment #42

    BamBambs ITK always disappoint me bald or not
    Transfers 0
    Takeover 0
    Bambams barber 0
    OLG baccy man 0
    ITK -0

    0
  • Tsunki

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:09 PM

    Comment #43

    Stop wriggling catchy it’s not right is it? Anyway aren’t you late for a rally? 😉

    13
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:13 PM

    Comment #44

    I don’t think that our players are as bad as so many on here keep saying. However if this idea keeps getting repeated and it is getting back to the players (there may be some who do blog on here or they may read the blog) then it’s going to subconsciously creep into their minds that they are rubbish.

    It’s been mentioned several times on here that we should be at least 10 points better off but for some rubbish reffing, that would mean we’d be relatively safe in a top ten position and the players themselves might be able to play with less pressure on them thus giving better performances.

    Just a passing thought!

    1
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:17 PM

    Comment #45

    I see that Blog tennis is continuing into the new year!

    1
  • Lindisfarne

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:18 PM

    Comment #46

    Tsunki – likewise a lot of the time

    0
  • catchy in norway

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:18 PM

    Comment #47

    well its not really tennis,, its more like, just tow the party line or we will crucify you.

    4
  • Bambams

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #48

    Ffsashley

    Again I have never said I was ITK,
    I merely passed on what I was told from someone I have known since they were born – a very professional person.

    Fella I care not whether you believe it or not, I can guarantee what I have posted is 100% accurate – or I would not have posted.

    All it suggests is ‘The Buyer’ whether it’s Kenyon (press and leaked letter) or another – had proven the funds on 12th December.

    Cheers for the craic fella

    10
  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:21 PM

    Comment #49

    Burton’s big day out.

    0
  • Lindisfarne

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:24 PM

    Comment #50

    Just been looking in to when Jacob Murphy first joined NUFC (for an initial fee of £10m) and I do not get the impression that he was a Rafa choice. There is no mention of the manager having contacted him or really speaking to him other than moving to the club was a good opportunity to work under him.

    ““My agent told me Newcastle were interested. My mum said: ‘Right, this has got to happen.’ My dad, he was like, ‘Well what happens if you stay at Norwich for one more season, get more games and more experience?’ But it was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down and he saw that. He was just a bit more cautious.” https://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2018/01/12/jacob-murphy-life-newcastle-without-twin-toughest-thing-leaving/

    This quote indicates that really it was the club that instigated the transfer, perhaps as an alternative to Rafas request for Townsend?

    4
  • c-dog

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:30 PM

    Comment #51

    Bambams

    Not heard anything but it looks clear Ashley is isn’t willing to sell just yet. I hope he is genuinely willing to sell up at some point but it’s not right now.

    2
  • c-dog

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:32 PM

    Comment #52

    EGB

    The majority of first team players we have have a deep history of relegation

    1
  • padthemag

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:36 PM

    Comment #53

    Funny how when we sell Wijnaldum, Carrol , Sissoko and Cabaye 20-35m is the going rate but when we are asked to pay that it’s astronomical . Fans need to back the protests instead of saying “it will never work” no it won’t if only 1% of the fan base try. The cockney mags are more committed of course it doesn’t bother Ashley he spews a bit of spin and everything stops WTF. Make it as hostile as West Ham did and see what happens enough is enough 1cockney and a few of his weasels are beating us

    16
  • Lindisfarne

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:37 PM

    Comment #54

    Leazes Flags@FlagsLeazes

    We will be on @talkSPORT this Friday evening alongside @stevehowey624 , talking about what has happened lately and the current state of our club. #NUFC
    Please tune in.

    21
  • Bambams

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:39 PM

    Comment #55

    C-dog

    My only hope is Ash knows he had no lives left, I think he will have given Kenyon his price but can’t see him getting full asking price – you never do.

    With that I suppose if Kenyon/buyer leaves it to the last minute and Ash does not accept, then he is going to have to spend a lot of money very quickly (players) or risk us getting relegated AGAIN and losing £150 million +

    I think the reason Almiron is taking so long is Ash is expecting a bid soon, they have to have agreed to a final date.

    But I have to admit it does have all the hallmarks of another ashLIE scam, but until I hear otherwise mate my glass is half full.

    Cheers fella

    4
  • Optimistic Panda

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:46 PM

    Comment #56

    Cod on the line

    1
  • welshgeordie9

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:46 PM

    Comment #57

    Did say a while back that nothing will happen with the takeover and players not coming in, so in the future if you lot want any reliable source, try the welshgeordie9 source, very reliable.

    1
  • Reilly

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:47 PM

    Comment #58

    *******WUM ALERT*********

    8
  • jane

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:48 PM

    Comment #59

    Man City 0 Burton 0 @ 99/1 small bet

    1
  • c-dog

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:48 PM

    Comment #60

    Bambams

    It’s already too late. January fees are traditionally way higher. With teams unwilling to sell unless the can get replacements. Which is very difficult. With all due respect to Almiron, he only played in the MLS. Massive gamble on what he’s going to be like and could add nothing. Much like Muto so far(0.5 seasons in, the same period Almiron would have). We’re only shopping in the MLS now because it’s cheaper. Even France is too expensive from what Ashley is willing to pay. Unless you sign players like Saivet. You want to play in the premiership then pay the going rate. We are not willing to do that so in theory we actually deserve relegation. We have a champions league winning manager who is claiming he needs to work miracles to keep the club up with the quality of player we have. And we all know he’s right.

    9
  • toon22

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:49 PM

    Comment #61

    At least we can all now see MA has no intention of selling the club
    We’ve had all the PR they can think of

    He’s making a mug of us

    8
  • OneAlanShearer

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:50 PM

    Comment #62

    I really cannot stand thinking about Ashley owning the club much longer. It’s the slow death of a beautiful football club.

    10
  • toon22

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:51 PM

    Comment #63

    Jane

    The natives are getting restless

    It’s never MAs fault

    2
  • jane

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:54 PM

    Comment #64

    “The natives are getting restless”

    one of these things will placate them

    new owner
    Rafa staying
    January signings
    beating Chelsea or Man City

    1
  • Bambams

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:55 PM

    Comment #65

    C-dog

    I agree wholeheartedly with the time factor against us, I just cannot understand what other option ash has if he doesn’t sell.

    Agree also One Alan Shearer, it’s a horrible thought !

    3
  • Tsunki

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:55 PM

    Comment #66

    Lindisfarne – it would be interesting to see how many signings can actually be attributed to Rafa and how many were assigned to him according to budget.its already pretty accepted that the club’s usual M.O. is to scroll down the wish list until the price fits.

    1
  • jane

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:55 PM

    Comment #67

    “Man City 0 Burton 0 @ 99/1 small bet”

    didn’t last long!

    1
  • welshgeordie9

    Jan 9, 2019 at 7:56 PM

    Comment #68

    Its never rafas either.

    1
  • ashleysmate

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:03 PM

    Comment #69

    Hi Hibbit I like to read most of what you’ve got to say but.. since our last aborted takeover where, at the time you always remained positive, even in the face of some pricks on here… I’ve noticed a sour feeling to most of your posts of late… I didn’t expect you to turn negative like the rest of us… I guess jabba has a knack of knocking the stuffing out of all of us… One day.. One day..

    9
  • Tsunki

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:03 PM

    Comment #70

    Hmm Jane is beating Chelsea or city enough to quell the noisy mob? Good luck with that.

    4
  • c-dog

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:05 PM

    Comment #71

    Bambams

    If you think back to the last January windows when he tried to save us from relegation.

    Sissoko, Gouffran & Debuchy signings were a success

    Townsend and Shelvey were a failure

    He invested what? 20/25 million in both. Will 20/25 million save us in this day and age, probably not.

    But the already existing manager can

    It’s whats coming next that really scares me.
    Rafa leaving and hope evaporating

    4
  • ashleysmate

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:05 PM

    Comment #72

    Hi toon22
    Was beginning to think you’d buggered of to another blog… Or lilly pond

    2
  • Lindisfarne

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:06 PM

    Comment #73

    Marley Anderson@91Marley

    Only #NUFC could be “shocked” by a £20m player wanting in the region of £100k a week wages when they paid Michael Owen £125k a week nine and a half years ago. Believe it or not the market has moved on since then, it’s the going rate!

    5
  • Dondatta13

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:11 PM

    Comment #74

    Is this the reason the Fakeover has stalled?

    Jeff Bezos’ (Amazon) $137 Billion Divorce…

    lol

    3
  • toon22

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:14 PM

    Comment #75

    Jane

    Nobody believes the fakeover

    It’s lies

    3
  • Bambams

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:14 PM

    Comment #76

    C-dog

    This is my point, what other option has he got.

    If he doesn’t sell then he will need to spend £40 million on two players at the very least, 20/25 million nowadays will not cut it. You are spot on about the MLS, penny pinching again.

    If he doesn’t spend it could cost three times that at least if we are relegated and the team we have now would not cut it in the Championship.

    I just don’t know what he will be able to do on 1st Feb if no sale, Rafa is well peed off so no chance of a rallying call from him, another trip to the pizza restaurant won’t cut it.

    No takeover, we’re doomed

    I am still in hope until I either hear otherwise or it gets to the time Valentine cards are in shop windows.

    2
  • ashleysmate

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:15 PM

    Comment #77

    I think I’m going crazy. I keep hearing this sub cockney voice in my head all the time….
    “I turned the Mansoure’s down… I turned the Mansoure’s down
    Damned if I know where its coming from

    2
  • Optimistic Panda

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:16 PM

    Comment #78

    No point offering Almiron wages when you’ve offered 20 quid and a ham sandwich as a fee.

    They should offer him a box of shredded wheat after his paddle over on the lilo.

    2
  • GeordieTwo

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:17 PM

    Comment #79

    Looks to me as if you actually have a lot of support on here Tsunki, including me.

    2
  • Lindisfarne

    Jan 9, 2019 at 8:18 PM

    Comment #80

    Leazes Flags@FlagsLeazes

    Please tune in.
    ( Previous tweet was a mistake )

    We’ll be speaking on Friday’s #TotalSport on @bbcnewcastle, as well as looking ahead to the Chelsea game with @stevehowey624.

    And we’ll also hear from Rafa Benitez

    1

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