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Kinnear Explains Why Newcastle Are Now A Small Club

Joe Kinnear took the chance to lower Newcastle fans’ expectations today at Newcastle, which is almost an oxymoron, and has provided some financial figures in today’s program notes to show why we cannot compete at all with the top six in the Premier League – at least financially.

Mike Ashley and Joe Kinnear-6139216

Alan Pardew and Mike Ashley – Newcastle cannot compete financially

The big problem fans have with the club is that we are being told that our goal  this season is to simply finish in the top 10 – so 10th place is just fine – but of course not with The Geordie fans, who want Mike Ashley to be a lot more ambitious than that for their club.

This is some of what Joe Kinnear said in the program notes today:

“The chasm that exists between the league’s six most commercially powerful clubs and the rest is significant and growing ever wider.”

“Even putting the strongest four performers to one side, clubs like ours really have to over-perform in all areas in order to compete season after season with the likes of Liverpool and Spurs.”

“Their last published accounts show turnovers of £169M and £144M respectively, compared with our £93M.” “While that gap is striking enough, it is in respect of commercial turnover where the real gulf is evident.”

“Liverpool reported a commercial turnover for 2011-12 of £64M while Spurs reported £53M.” “Ours, in contrast, was just shy of £14M increasing to £17M for 2012-13.”

“We cannot, at this time, compete commercially with the very biggest global brands in football because the hugely lucrative sponsorship deals will go their way.”

“But what remains of the marketplace for the rest of us, we must and will fight for our share, and more.” “Through astute financial management and by maximizing every commercial opportunity available to us.”

“We will give ourselves the best possible chance of competing on the field with those whose strength off it makes them – on paper at least – untouchable.”

When Bobby Robson was sacked in August, 2004, we had just finished 5th in the Premier League and it was just not good enough after finishing 4th and 3rd in the previous two  seasons.

And at that time we were probably the 5th biggest club in England behind Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, and we had revenues of close to £100M – but since then we have lost ground with our revenues are still not what they were at that time.

The big question is why our revenues have fallen so much over the last nine years, and of course that relegation did not help one little bit.

So since Bobby was fired we have fallen big time as a major club, and Manchester City and Tottenham and maybe others are now above us.

At best we are the 7th biggest club in England now, but other clubs are starting to come after us even for that position – such as teams like Swansea and Southampton.

It’s hardly a good story – and we are being told today by Joe Kinnear that essentially we are now a small club.

It’s just not good enough – and that’s a huge understatement.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

43 comments so far

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    Comment #1

    Thanks for clearing that up joe, there was some confusion, because we hadn’t really heard much about how we can’t compete before….

  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    Comment #2

    Nothing gets past wor Joe like, here was me expecting us to be challenging for the title and outbidding Man City for players.

    Why doesn’t Kinnear just shut his gob and actually do what he gets payed for.

  • Byker Boy

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Comment #3

    I don’t think, I know! he’s a Cockney Toss Pot and he knows bugger all.

  • JP...from The Rock

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Comment #4

    Ed- stop fuelling the fire. For once I have to agree with Kinnear here. We aren’t what we used to be and to reach that level in revenue we have to be top 10 or higher for a number of seasons to make some big profit in revenue and sign key players that can take us further forward. What bugs me is the fact we do have a billionaire owner and with just say another 50m on players we will be top 5 again easy, that’s if we can keep of the current squad we now have, including Remy.

  • croftus5678

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:53 PM

    Comment #5

    i dont get what difference it makes tbh !!!!
    we all know the top 6 have a lot more money than us its nothing new and not what most fans are getting upset for !!!!
    its the fact that what money we do have i.e. tv money and our biggest sponsor money yet to date !!!! is not looking like its being spent on that 2-3 players we need to push us into the 7th 8th place that should be ours.

  • sirtoongospel

    Oct 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Comment #6

    Let’s be honest here, how much would our turnover be if the owner of Sports Direct paid more than £0 for the 47,000 signs he has up at the ground? He pays nothing then tells us we can’t compete, while he continues to buy out the entire high street. Galling.

  • santonthenewmaldini

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Comment #7

    Annoying thing is the top 6 at the moment are not all performing like they normally do in fact with a bit more investment in the last couple of seasons we could have sneaked into the Champs league !

    The season we came 5th if we had bought a defender or 2 along with Cisse we would have been business same with last season Chelsea , Spurs and Arsenal wobbled for good parts of it !

    Thing is with a little bit of investment say about 15 to 20 million we could have got Remy, Ince, Redmond and another striker not really a lot to give us some depth

  • Mister Tuff

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    Comment #8

    Impressive words by JK – right – seems like somebody else’s script. Another attempt at lowering expectations.

  • Toon-Prodigy

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:10 AM

    Comment #9

    Well said Croftus.

    It’s the whole insufficient recruitment process they adhere to.

    Loans, out of contract players, penny pinching rather than to get players over the line. Haggling over wages with our players and potentially new players. Recruiting in the January window instead of the summer to get better prices on players and out of contract players.

    Basically huge gambles which stunt are growth and ability to challenge for trophys season after season.

    We just want the money that we do bring in to be used every year to give us the best opportunity possible to compete. Not this farce we see every summer and the penny pinching that goes with it.

    The odd loan or out of contract players, no problem. But building our whole recruitment structure around it is wrong. We are suffering because of the gambles. Gambles that really don’t need to be took in the first place.

  • jimmysmith

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Comment #10

    Yes, Joe’ s right, it’s not a level playing field, as the big 6 aren’t owned by the likes of Mike Ashley.

  • croftus5678

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Comment #11

    @7 santon

    thing is our signings have been great and are getting better by the game so i think every one of them has increased in value (mbiwa still needs to settle but give him time) so i dont know why they dont spend the money we have to get the young talent they can get before someone else gets them !

    like you say with ince he’s an ideal investment that will sign for a bigger team soon if we are not carefull same with redmond/sinclair ect ect

  • BlacknWhiteBarmy

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    Comment #12

    So this talking cleft is now the finacial director – remember “judge me by my signings”. Dont worry joe, we have

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Comment #13

    Anyone see old arry doing his but at QPR vs Milwall!
    Someone went to throw the ball to a player for a throw in and hit floppy chops in the head and he went mental!

  • wynsleap

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Comment #14

    sirtoongospel @ 6 – You are dead right. If he paid the going rate to the club for all of his tacky advertising at the stadium and didn’t take all the merchandising sales (shirts etc) for Sports Direct even when they are bought at the Official Club Shops we may get nearer the others.
    This bloke wants it every way. Kinnear should keep his big trap shut.
    Sick to bloody death of them all to be honest.

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    Comment #15


    Think we’ve all had this arguement with Ashley sympathisers at one stage or another!
    He has SD’s signs plastered all over the ground, but pays zero for the privilege
    In the 6 years he’s been here SD has gone from strength to strength yet somehow, despite being financially stable as JFK is so eager to remind us, the debt has increased and we still have one of the largest wage bills in the league
    Ashley is not doing as good of a job as him and his cronies think!

  • metaloverlord

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:11 AM

    Comment #16

    Mbiwa needs to settle very quickly. Otherwise he is going to continually look a class below the rest.

  • workyticket

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:14 AM

    Comment #17

    As I pointed out on my own blog some time ago, Newcastle Uinted should make around double the commercial revenue it does, around £25 million per season rather than the £13’8 million from it’s last public accounts. This isn’t just an unrealistic expection that we should be up there with the top six clubs, it is in comparison with ALL Premier League clubs. We can’t compete with the big six right now, but we should be more or less at the top of the chasing pack,

    The stuff about Sports Direct only using unused advertising space is a blatant con, just like pretty much everything at Newcastle United nowadays. Since the club’s merchandising was taken over by Sports Direct, commercial revenue has also been affected in that area too. It beggars belief that Newcastle United only makes the same amount on that than clubs with much smaller fanbases.

    It’s also another attempted con first voiced by Pardew a few days ago, and now Kinnear to paint fans as unrealistic fools who expect the club to be competing with Manchester United and Manchester City, but we do expect be competing with the likes of Everton and that isn’t unrealistic in the slightest.

    What is most surprising is the amount of Geordies who are actually swallowing this sh**e. Then again, Ashley was a very proficient conman before he bought Newcastle United with his phony 70% off tags and his phony closing down sales.

    Newcastle United has generated many,many millions for Ashley’s most important business, Sports Direct, but it has received nothing in return. All Ashley has put into the club in real terms is the £130 million he used to buy the club, the rest is all debt which is rapayable on future brodcasting revenue or £129 million which is repayable on demand at any time.

  • toonincheek

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:14 AM

    Comment #18

    Cant argue with JKs comments – it’s pretty much as we know it.

    But I CAN and DO argue with him opening his mouth and saying it the way he has.

    He should be saying that we are in a different position to the top 6 financially, therefore we have to look to compete by buying astutely rather than splashing big money on established stars.

    Saying it in that way gives it a positive spin rather than the negative spin he manages to put on it.

  • toonincheek

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:17 AM

    Comment #19

    Free advertising – same old same old.

    If you want to analyse the club finances objectively, then at least balance the SD free advertising with a MA interest free loan.

  • santonthenewmaldini

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:27 AM

    Comment #20

    Thats the thing that annoys me the most is the whole competing thing look at clubs like Dortmund and Porto ! They compete at the highest level through bringing their own talent through and making shrewd purchases

    They then sell players but make sure they have the replacements already at the club or get them without a fuss we could easily do what they do plus we have the makings of a decent team at the moment

    Just gutted we did not win yesterday as if we had got the points and beat Sunderland we could be top 4/5 by the end of next week how crazy would that have been!!?

  • lesh

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:31 AM

    Comment #21


    Is there anything positive that Ashley and Mrs K can say about Kinnear being a senior and influential employee of Newcastle United?

    Mrs K can give positives of course as it keeps the useless lummox out from under her feet

    Answers on postcard to Mike Ashley c/o their local boozed.

  • lesh

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:41 AM

    Comment #22

    Come to think of it, Kinnear hasn’t explained why we’re a relatively small club. All he’s done is explain the situation we’re in and not how we got there or what’s to be done to take us forward and be successful enough to attract the players who’ll get us the results to attract the big sponsors to increase our commercial revenues to ……

    In other words, how are going to join the big hitters? An action plan to take the club forward would be good to hear. Joe, let’s have that by next week…… if he understands what we’d like to hear from him. That is his job isn’t it?

  • swemag

    Oct 20, 2013 at 1:48 AM

    Comment #23

    I guess there is no need to state this over and over again as it is known. But then again the club will be told that they don’t communicate enough if they don’t.
    Maybe people should make up their minds.
    We seem to have sound finances, we have pretty decent team and squad.
    Someone said another 50 million would make us a top six side. How exactly are you going to spend that money? 2 players for 25 million? What about their wages? And where exactly do you find those 2 players in the 25 million pounds class that actually wants to sign for us? (please don’t mention the giraffe that is currently playing for West Ham)
    Sam and West Ham showed some real ambition in the summer and spent good money, I guess they are just bang on for a top six place now…sorry, make that bottom six.
    You become successful by doing something different than the rest, not by doing exactly the same.

  • lesh

    Oct 20, 2013 at 2:34 AM

    Comment #24

    Ah ha! So swemag, we will be successful by doing things differently to other clubs. Now I understand.

    We’re gonna be successful by not spending significantly, nit-picking over fees and players wages to propel us into the realms of the big and highly successfully clubs.

    Yup, it all makes sense now

  • swemag

    Oct 20, 2013 at 2:46 AM

    Comment #25

    Lesh, I am glad you got the point. I thought it was made quite clear, not a lot of mystery. No reading between the lines needed.

  • Carr Toon

    Oct 20, 2013 at 3:30 AM

    Comment #26

    We may not be able to compete with them now, its fine….. but the major problem for fans is that no ambition from owner to get there among big boys…..


    Oct 20, 2013 at 4:36 AM

    Comment #27


  • theartfuldodger

    Oct 20, 2013 at 4:47 AM

    Comment #28

    “We cannot compete” is a highly generalized statement.
    Drilling into the finer points
    1. Is Pardew and Kinnear the best we can afford ?
    2. Penny Pinching really required ? Big 6 haggle pay over the odds, you atleast pay the going rate.

    Its all good to say we cant compete,but when people do their jobs eg carr and pardew and players against lpool , we can.
    When Kinnear doesent do his, we cant.

    If every one is good at their job, we can finish between 5th and 8th consistently and grow.
    If we are between 10th and 14th , there isnt much growth.

    P.S. Ashley was the owner who oversaw relegation. Isnt he responsible for the lower revenues.


    Oct 20, 2013 at 7:02 AM

    Comment #29

    Well done JK ! Specialist subject the F……….. Obvious !

    But i think i already knew what you have just stated?
    I will tell you why; we don,t have the pulling power to get the players we need to sign for us anymore.

    The pure penny pinching and bloody stupid transfer policy which is now in place has meant players like Boney and van Wolfswinkel going to other clubs.
    These other clubs are willing to pay more to get the players in and pay higher wages to do so, lookat what happened with Remy? ( i read somewhere QPR offered an extra 25 thousand a week to go to them instead of us! )?

    We are talking about NUFC here, and a Fanbase, which is, after all, one of the biggest in the country, the fans have completely different expectations and ambitions than the two clowns running the show, and as long as the same policy is maintained then the whole situation will not be changing any time soon.

    Getting back to JK,S statement above, it is very much obvious to me that what he is saying is a typical Ashley statement, which has been prepared beforehand, by Ashley himself?
    JK was a less than average trainer before he was unfortunate enough to get his heart problems. Basically he was one of the worst trainers we have had for decades and now he is a Financial expert all in ther space of a few years.

    Will we be signing anyone in January ????????

    Around about mid-november the usual circus merry-go round will start and build up to a Crescendo, and we will be linked with about 25 different names again, Same 0ld, Same Old. ad infinitum !

    With another Owner at the club, it could be a whole other story because we have had and still have the potential and the Fanbase for years to be more than “the Small club that JK is now calling us !

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Oct 20, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    Comment #30

    How can you offset the (free) loan against the free advertising?
    MA owns NUFC personally , it’s bought from his money

    SD is not his personal toy, he the majority share holder, not the exclusive owner there is no way they are merely entitled to slap there logo free of charge all over our stadium, training hits and programmes and in fact by doing so had taken away a major source of income from the club whilst complaining that there isn’t enough revenue coming in

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Oct 20, 2013 at 8:08 AM

    Comment #31

    Our wage bill is the 7th highest, under Shepard and hall it was 6th, we have a higher debt than under the previous owners
    How is this more financially stable?

  • Oleg G

    Oct 20, 2013 at 8:09 AM

    Comment #32

    Lose 12 times (twice against those 6 “best” clubs), and win the rest of your games, and you have 78 points.

  • lochinvar

    Oct 20, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Comment #33

    JFK shows a complete lack of commercial acumen in his statements. As he is an ex footballer who has never worked in a competitive business he is not the right person to make such judgements or comments. Talking down any business or club’s position is counter productive and does little for fans, current or future players ambitions. Reality is one thing but should be kept in house. Why don’t we have a team of experienced sales and brand ( and that’s what the club has to be at least in the commercial sense ) managers to sell the club identity to the world – not just the Far East ( we don’t play in red their favourite colour ) but the States, India and elsewhere. Building “revenue” will come from selling the heritage, emotion and excitement of belonging to the Toon , in turn that leads to sales and revenue that allows acquisitions of players to enhance success on the pitch. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. That is ambition.


    Oct 20, 2013 at 9:20 AM

    Comment #34


    How,s about they sack JK and just give you the job of Promoting the Product around the globe !

    Like i said earlier, Kinnear is just saying what the Ash is telling him to say.

    His business accumen is basically non-existant, he was a below average player, a less than below average manager for us, and now he thinks he is a financial wizard !
    Perish the thought that he is directly involved with the scouting and Transfers at the club.

    I can imagine negotiations for a prospective signing, of a player would go something like this:

    “This a wonderful club, one of the best in the land, steeped in tradition, but a financially sound organisation at the same time!
    We know that you have earned 75K a week at Swansea Mr Binney, but we would like to come and play for for say 45K a week, with an emergency get out clause if a BIGGER comes in and is willing to pay big money for you to go to play for them elsewhere”!

    It really is a crock that JK was ever allowed to come back to the club in the first palce at all !


    Oct 20, 2013 at 9:25 AM

    Comment #35

    Please somebody correct me if I’m wrong….
    But don’t we have much larger revenues than Everton Swansea and Southampton?

    Should JFK be dwelling on how our ‘small’ club should really be aiming for 7th?? A few points behind top 6. But a couple ahead of 8th…. Financially speaking?!


  • lesh

    Oct 20, 2013 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #36

    lochinvar @33

    Why we don’t have good marketing people to promote the Newcastle United brand throughout the world?

    Why doesn’t Ashley ask himself why the ground has acres of Sports Direct advertising that brings in no revenue?

    Rather than be guided by a clown who’s out of touch with modern football or business, why not get rid of Kinnear and employ someone to market the brand and attract revenue by buying the advertising space currently promoting SD at no cost?

    There’s money there to be made, why doesn’t Ashley do something to attract it to the club rather than have Kinnear telling us why we’re a small club?


    Oct 20, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #37

    @36 :

    Basically because they aint got the slightest idea of how to run the Club on financially sound basis !

    Ashley has pumped millions into the club which all adds up to him just doing with the club exactly what he wants !

    It aint rocket science to figure that one out, thinking about it logically, Chris Mort saw that, which i think is one of the reasons he left?

  • marshy

    Oct 20, 2013 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #38

    as long as we have an owner who bought the club for all the wrong reasons then we will continue to struggle.

  • zargothuk

    Oct 20, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    Comment #39

    Didn’t Keegan say the same thing and then was basically pushed out?

  • AndyMac

    Oct 20, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #40

    There is a real danger, as shown by the number of uninformed posts on this subject, that the clubs propaganda mesaages will start to hit home with the fans who’ll accept the sh@te as gospel.

    Truth is we lack neither the clout nor the appeal to attract top line sponsors. Branson was quoted as saying that NUFC never asked him to submit a bid for the increased shirt sponsorship because Fatman had already decided to go with Wonga.

    Why did he choose a third rate, loan shark company ? Maybe the same reason he chose Puma as kit sponsors ? Every team in the PL tells the fans how much a kit and shirt sponsorship is worth. Liverpools “Warrior” deal is allegedly worth £25m per season yet the “Ashley inspired” Puma contract is never mentioned.

    It is no coincidence that while NUFC’s income has stagnated over these past few seasons, Sports Direct’s value has more than tripled. In 1997 its shares were worth 134p and now they’re well over 600p and rising.

    Shady deals with Wonga and Puma may not be good for us but I’m pretty sure they’re good for someone !


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