Fans will remember well when there was tension between Rafa Benitez and the hierarchy when he wanted to sign Andros Townsend in January of 2017, and he thought signing that player would help guarantee promotion to the Premier League.
Townsend would have cost £12M, but Lee Charnley in his interview with the Mail has said the money was just not available.
Newcastle tried to do a loan deal near the end of January but that fell through, and the club was concerned about taking on a player who was getting £70K/week.
Lee Charnley – Newcastle want to win a Cup
Ultimately we failed to sign Townsend, and his price was up to £25M in the summer of last year.
Lee has also admitted it was his mistake in signing Steve McClaren which ultimately sent us back down to the Championship.
Mike Ashley allows Charnley to pick the manager but when we heard it was going to be McClaren – he wasn’t even a successful manager never mind a world-class manager.
This is some of what Lee Charnley has said in his fascinating interview in the Mail:
“It’s not like we’re sat on a big pot of cash keeping it for a rainy day.”
“Money comes in, money goes out and what’s left is available to spend, it’s that simple.”
“In simple terms, I accept my share of the responsibility for us going down.”
“Steve McClaren was my appointment. Given the owner’s approach in terms of supporting the manager, me and the club, it just didn’t fit.”
“The players are now hugely incentivised when it comes to the cup competitions.”
“We’ve made our view clear on the cups in the past but now – and we’ve said this to Rafa – it’s, “Have a go, try and win a cup”.”
“‘This year was about staying in the Premier League and now it’s about growing and improving year on year, but doing that within our means,’ he said.
“That’s not to say there is a lack of ambition because there definitely is ambition, it will just take some time.”
Rafa will want to strengthen his squad and make sure we have enough players in the hope we can get two good runs in the FA Cup and League Cup next season.
Jack Farish is currently studying for a Master’s degree in sport and exercise psychology at Northumbria University.
His thesis project looks at Premier League fans’ team identification – how well they support and identify with their team.
Jack has put together a relatively short questionnaire of team identification and satisfaction with life; it should take no longer than 10 minutes.
You can help Jack by filling out the survey here.