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Will Resignation At Sports Direct Affect Newcastle’s Summer Business?

The London Economic is reporting that one of Sports Direct’s chief lieutenants resigned effective immediately yesterday.

Karen Byers has left the sports retail company after 28 years of service. There is no word on why she has made this decision.

According to the report, she was highly valued by Mike Ashley and said to “runs Sports Direct” as well as being “glue that holds it all together”.

Mike Ashley, proving that he can speak when it suits him, had this to say about Karen Byers:

“Karen has been a very supportive member of the team for over 28 years and we wish her well for the future.

“The focus of the business as we move forward remains our programme of brand elevation, one that we are totally committed to.

“The door will always be open to Karen if she wishes to come back to the business as a consultant.”

We do not know if this was a surprise to Mike Ashley or if this departure has been in the works for some time.

The London Economic writes the following about her contribution to Sports Direct:

Her departure is likely to have a significant impact on the business, with current and former staff calling her a “workaholic” who rose through the ranks of the organisation.

We do feel that this is likely to shift Ashley’s attention even more away from Newcastle United. Sports Direct has always been his focus and was most likely the reason he bought Newcastle, to use St James Park as a billboard.

This could put the honus even more on Lee Charnely to produce this summer. And that is never a good thing. Though it is likely to have minimal effect.

68 comments so far

  • droppy in Wallsend

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:29 PM

    Comment #1

    Wow that last thread had everything.

    Idiots, arrogance and the MA appreciation society.

    Whatever next?

  • DubaiMicky

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:31 PM

    Comment #2

    droppy – the twitter trolls finding planes and helichopters?

  • Wayayman

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #3

    ow Tsunki you read my mind.

    Bobby, you’re welcome to play the toon fanatic martyr card but I’m very sorry to tell you that it’s exactly the attitude that keeps Ashley at our club. You know the facts, you know Ashley is gaining enormous wealth from just having free advertising alone beamed globally and mckeag & Seymour et al just didn’t get that massive amount of benefit from being in charge way back then.
    That’s just one reason why Ashley is by far the worst ever owner we’ve had.

    If you keep going to the game that is entirely your decision, but you can’t hide from the fact that without people in the stadium there would be no ashley at our club. People like Hibitt whonis considering his position carefully and the countless others here have made a massive sacrifice in stopping doing something they love just as much as you do are the sort of fans who will help us get our club back one day.

  • droppy in Wallsend

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:33 PM

    Comment #4


    Forgot about them.

  • Foggy Hall to Timbuktu

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #5

    Droppy/ Dubai

    Howay, there might be something in Ashley’s chopper landing in the toon today.

  • DubaiMicky

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:39 PM

    Comment #6

    Foggy, if his chopper came anywhere near The Toon, then I’m pretty sure it would be sliced off Bobbit style.

    If it could be found.

  • Return of the Geordi

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:39 PM

    Comment #7

    I think Rafa’s comments in the Times alludes to there being more than one group trying to buy us. It’s possible one group wanted Rafa, but BZG didn’t. In typical Ashley fashion, Rafa was kept in the dark on who was in the lead and started considering the offer from China, his comments on the club not being fussed on keeping him suggests to me BZG are close to completion of the sale and that’s why he’s off to Darjeeling

  • droppy in Wallsend

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:39 PM

    Comment #8


    Not knocking it, but let’s face it he’s more likely to be dropping bags of horse crap across the city than anything good.

  • NY Mag

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:40 PM

    Comment #9


    Aye, you might be right…..I’d be worried about the seating capacity, because that might be how many players he’s airlifting out 🙂

  • Dubs Left Glove

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:40 PM

    Comment #10

    his chopper is back in the sky and heading back south.

  • Novocastrian66

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:41 PM

    Comment #11

    A helicopter lands at Newcastle airport. Private plane lands at Newcastle airport. Shock. Isn’t that what happens at airports?

  • droppy in Wallsend

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:42 PM

    Comment #12


    Thought it would be Manchester bound.

    South is better.

  • Shoulders knees

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:42 PM

    Comment #13

    Don’t get hopes up;-) AshLie just picking up some wheelie bins to take and get his money back on,won’t need as many now

  • Deanoooo

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:42 PM

    Comment #14

    Coarse it wont effect business….. still wont buy anyone under Ashley ……. has to be a take over happening otherwise there be wsr this season when the teams relegated

  • Foggy Hall to Timbuktu

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #15

    It wouldnt surprise me if he just sent it up here just to wind us up.

  • Jib

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #16

    Tony I posted this last night
    It says Alaves are still waiting on Joselu

  • #boycott Arsenal

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #17

    I wondered how long it would take you to gloat that Rafa never waited for the Arsenal job.
    As for your dig at supporters for chucking tickets because Rafa has left, do you think they’d have chucked if the reason he was going was because they were bringing Carlo Ancellotti? It is not only about Rafa leaving, it’s all about the reasons why he’s leaving. The club have already told us they don’t want to win anything, the only true statement they’ve ever released, Rafa going was their biggest statement yet that underlines their lack of ambition and their desire just to survive in the league, they’re both liars and con men and why should I carry on funding that for absolutely nothing back.

  • Bills Son Is Back

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #18

    Rotunda – Bill, Maybe that’s why we have never won anything because you keep going, accepting c–p no matter what. At what point does a light bulb moment actually occur for you guys and you start to question the status quo, or are you so steeped in the mediocre yes sir, no sir, whatever you say Mr Ashley mentality that you just continue to accept this nonsense for the foreseeable.

    A much simpler explanation…. I’m a supporter.

    I’m not a yo yo supporter, good time supporter, top half of the Prem supporter, snow flake supporter, cup run supporter, owner supporter or when I can be ar$ed supporter.

    Real supporters support their club through thick and thin and if it wasn’t for the 12,000 to 15,000 that kept going during the 80’s we might now be in the 1st or 2nd Div.

    Who the hell do you think you are, or anyone else, to take the pi$$ out of the likes of me who refuse to stop supporting the club? If you honestly call yourself supporters you need to check out the word in the dictionary and fckn stick to it.

  • RobLeenio

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #19

    So, Ashley’s helicopter lands at Newcastle airport 15 minutes after a scheduled daily flight from Dubai (which includes a very nice first class cabin btw), stops for 20 minutes then heads back down South and folk don’t think that’s worthy of comment?

  • c-dog

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:47 PM

    Comment #20


    Any helicopter or private jet that has landed at the airport since 2017 has been carrying active buyers and/or sellers.

    Or Denis Wise…

  • Madmag

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:47 PM

    Comment #21

    I posted this previously but the blog had moved on so I’ll repost ;- )

    Somebody said this …

    “Stopped caring means you couldn’t give a fcuk what happens, including relegation.
    Fans of my era, supporters during the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s have seen far far worse times than what is happening now.

    That is why gates regularly fell to below 15,000 when the ground held 60,000. It was only the diehards, like me, who still went to games home and away – even though we hardly ever won away. I don’t blame anyone for jumping on the KK bandwagon and supporting the club during that era and later on SBR’s but they are just the type who are likely to think armageddon has arrived now. It hasn’t.” Yet I wonder just how many of you would go of we were in the Championship or lower”

    This comment is spot on but of course he was immediately told in no uncertain terms he was a MA stooge.

    LOL I come to this blog when I need a good laugh and you (Jail, Toon22, Hibbit, et al.) never fail to produce, what with your conspiracy theories etc.

    As for the ITK’s it strikes me a lot of internet con tricksters have appeared here and are practicing their trade here.

    I too like the comment someone else made…

    “Is Dalian near the Wirral?
    Seems funny now that we were counting up how many hours Rafa could get back to the Wirral from various clubs like Celtic, PSG and West Ham and some even saying he wouldn’t sign for various teams because they were too far away. Seems the commonly accepted knowledge that he didn’t want to be far from Liverpool wasn’t that true.”

    We’ve lost a manager (a relatively good one) but lets be honest here, its some time since he won anything serious (apart from Italian Cup and Super cup) the last major INTERNATIONAL honour he won was the champions league in 2005 that 14 years ago. I like the guy but to treat him like he was a god and saviour of Newcastle is IMO wrong, he a good trainer but very defensive.

    Here’s another thing us lurkers puzzle about, what’s with all the “Fat Slug” “Ashlie” “Fat Cockney Bastard” “Cockney
    Twat’ insults do you actually belief he reads this rubbish or has other people reading it for him etc.(Toon22 for example) I guess it makes you feel a bit better to insult him but really it’s a bit childish IMO

    The main thing I don’t understand here is… MA is a Billionaire he saw an opportunity to make some money by buying a Football club, his only objective (remember he is a businessman) was to make money

    He’s not a Fan and as far as he is concerned as long as he can make money from the club he will continue to do so
    I’m afraid you will all just have to ‘suck it up’ till he goes”

    Like all bad previous owners he will eventually disappear but it will be a time of his choosing

    Someone just said this …Rafa is a man in great demand! You won’t catch him begging for a job anywhere. He called Ashley’s bluff and moved on and Ashley didn’t even have a plan b!

    For gods sake MA’s Plan b is to continue what he’s been doing over the years i.e Maximising Income to MA

    I visited Newcastle last week for the first time in a year and the strange thing noticed was the lack of NUFC shirts on display, although some did appear on the Saturday

  • Madmag

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:48 PM

    Comment #22

    Is it still raining in Newcastle

  • Foggy Hall to Timbuktu

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #23

    Exactly yet someones dogs, aunty is the pet of someone closed to the deal and it says its happening for £350m is worthy of a discussion 😉

  • Singinginthecorner

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #24

    Just a thought could CharnLIE be getting relived of his services and Karen Byars be the replacement ….

  • Jib

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #25

    Did the chopper fly over the city ?
    If so it’s probably Midhat being given a view of SJP
    before appearing on Sky to announce the takeover

  • Novocastrian66

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #26

    I hope there is something in it but I doubt it. Just people going about their business.

  • DubaiMicky

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:52 PM

    Comment #27

    Sorry Rob, the NCL flight is 2 class only, business and economy. IF there was anything in it they’d have flown into LON, (8+ departures a day and with first) makes much more sense.

  • beermonkey

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:54 PM

    Comment #28

    Karen Byars got fed up of her zero hours contract no holiday or sick pay
    She will take up her new position as a sainsbury check out girl shortly
    She is said to be delighted with the pay and conditions

  • c-dog

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:54 PM

    Comment #29


    I can confirm Midhat was in the helicopter

  • Foggy Hall to Timbuktu

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:54 PM

    Comment #30


    Flew over the city and then over Benton.

  • DaveD1000

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #31

    JB II

    Follow Follow @claudey_jivo
    Open tweet to all #nufc fans banging on about takeovers, flight plans and ficking aliens; please stop embarrassing us! Christ you’re making me look half normal, this isn’t on!

    1:42 PM – 2 Jul 2019
    3 replies 0 retweets 4 likes
    Reply 3 Retweet Like 4 Direct message

  • RobLeenio

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:56 PM

    Comment #32

    Oh, and it left from near Chesterfield, about a 20 minute drive from Shirebrook.

    Of course, Ashley could be sticking the aforementioned Karen Byers in direct charge of NUFC and ditching Charnley to try to turn this sh!tstorm around. This could be her turning up for work.

  • Rotonda heights

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:57 PM

    Comment #33

    I think I’m someone who after 50 years is definitely not a yo yo fan, that’s who I am pal. It’s fine if you want to blatantly and happily ignore all that is going on right in front of you. Well they do say ignorance is blind. Same tired excuses ”Well I’ve always done it, I meet my mates blah blah blah,” just go to the b—y pub and watch it for once and be a tiny bit discerning.

    If there is a takeover, you’re in the box seat, if there isn’t ……………

  • Tsunki

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:59 PM

    Comment #34

    Is a real supporter a self-pleasing indulger in a sham club who hasn’t got the will or sense to see the pain of surgery may be required to save a life?

    Not spending money with Ashley isn’t harmful, it can’t ruin you. There’s always advocates of doing nothing, because that’s the easiest thing to do. And the more you want to do nothing the more vigorously you justify it, apparently .

  • Tsunki

    Jul 2, 2019 at 1:59 PM

    Comment #35

    Was it Midhat? Or the usual Asshat?

  • Ron Knee

    Jul 2, 2019 at 2:02 PM

    Comment #36
  • Genjikai

    Jul 2, 2019 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #37

    Heres a different spin from someone of a younger generation.
    I was born in 1991.
    So grown up all i had was quite good memories of the toon.
    Alls up and downs be we still had class. Howare man we had Shearer.
    Then ashley turns up a young genji believed he was going to transform us like.chelsea had been transformed.
    We were there are there abouts and could match man utd chelsea arsenal.
    I couldnt of dreamed more finally the toon was going to be a someone and i couldnt be more proud.
    Nufc is more than a football club its our way of life
    Im just a typical geordie and many of my age will have the same story.
    I dont want to be sitting here in 30 year time talking about shit owners how we never done anything never will.
    I dont want to be sitting in 2050 talking about china running world football because a dick of a owner mike ashley wouldnt invest.
    He needs to go.
    Youve got people trying to convince there 12 year old sons nephews daughters to support the toon. What??? There should be no need of convincing, at the end of the day rafa was bringing that magic feeling back.
    Bring in which ever manager you want it doesnt matter when ashley is here.
    Out of the 2 owners in my lifetime ashley is by far the worst. Nothing compares in my lifetime.

  • toon22

    Jul 2, 2019 at 2:05 PM

    Comment #38

    SD are under multiple investigations by the HMRC
    I’m guessing that one if them is getting close

    Possible good news 🙂

  • hibbit

    Jul 2, 2019 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #39

    i just don’t get how you can plant your flag on Bills Son Is Back lawn, the man has done nowt but slag the likes of you and me off for the last 3 weeks or so, called us worse than shit for going to games and your backing him ???????????

  • Foggy Hall to Timbuktu

    Jul 2, 2019 at 2:07 PM

    Comment #40


    I was born 1990 and we were lucky to be around albeit young in KK but managed to enjoy the sir Bobby days.

    Some poor buggars have only ever known Ashleys tenure.


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