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Will Ashley Improve The Squad This Summer – And What’s His Plan For The Future?

It’s now becoming a crisis at Newcastle as we seem to be finding it difficult to hire a manager to replace the departed Rafa Benitez.

Presumably, the Newcastle hierarchy would prefer that a new manager is put in place before they bring in new players – although that didn’t stop them back in the summer, 2015 when they brought in players without Steve McClaren being consulted.

We ended up relegated that season.

The transfer window opened on May 16th so it’s coming up to eight weeks now and Newcastle have sold Perez for £30M to Leicester City – who have ambitions way above those of Newcastle.

We know we will not be getting Salomon Rondon this summer and our other targets – defined by Rafa and Head of Recruitment Steve Nickson before the window opened – could already have been transferred.

The good news is that most of the transfer business is done in the last week, which in this case is the week before August 8th – with the Premier League kicking off the following weekend.

That’s 31 days to go in this transfer window.

But there’s a fundamental question to be answered about the team – will the new manager continue with Rafa’s tactics of quick counter-attacks or use a completely different system.

That will determine which players the new managers will want to bring in – plus his opinion about our existing players.

But he’s not going to be able to watch the players we have much – with only a month to do in the transfer window.

We’d be happy enough if we don’t lose any more of our good players – except Isaac Hayden who is moving for family reasons.

It’s definitely not a good situation to be in – and there may be a boycott for the first game against Arsenal.

But the very last thing we want to see is a civil war between fans with those that support the boycott personally criticizing those who will continue to go to the games – even if hell freezes over.

One reason Newcastle fans are the best in the business is because of that – their complete loyalty to Newcastle United FC.

It’s been like that all my life starting with my father attending all away games in the first half of the 1950s – when we won the FA Cup three times.

And the boycott will not hurt the club or Ashley financially – not with the club getting just over 70% of revenues from the Premier League TV revenue.

Here’s the breakdown of the revenue for the previous financial year (July 1, 2017 – June 30, 2018).

Match revenues are dropping quickly, and over the previous financial year were only 13.4% of revenues.

New owners would quickly raise the commercial revenues at the club, but under Ashley, they have been hopeless since he bought the club.

It’s not about hitting Mike Ashley in the pocket where it hurts – he couldn’t care less about that, and in fact, he couldn’t care less about the fans either.

Shame on him.

It’s trying to make it known across the world the complete failings and incompetence of our Sports Direct owner and somehow get him to sell the club and give our fans new life and new hope.

That’s what it’s all about.

One final thing – some fans have been accusing Ashley of putting some of Newcastle’s money into his own pocket or that of Sports Direct.

But believe me, that’s just not possible, and Newcastle United FC have their own set of financial books as do Sports Direct, and they are distinct and separate.

Ashley can be rightly accused of failing to spend Newcastle’s money, and we now have a lot of it – but he is in no way putting it in his own pocket or across to Sports Direct.

The set of books are audited each year.

So from a business sense, he is in no way “robbing” Newcastle other than being unwilling to spend the club’s money to create a much better team.

We have the money these days – if only he had some ambition and wanted to do that.

Comments welcome.

152 comments so far

  • #boycott Arsenal

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #81

    Mike Ashley has been BARRED from a Newcastle pub.

    The Newcastle United owner has been told to take his ‘power drinking’ elsewhere by bosses at The Millstone.

    The Gosforth pub acted after Toon boss Rafa Benitez announced he was leaving St James’ Park.

    Landlady Tracey Viereck’s pointed the finger at Ashley over the Spaniard’s exit – and added him to the pub’s ‘wall of shame’ ahead of Donald Trump and Vladamir Putin.

  • naptoon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #82

    Wow Keith Downie is arrogant.

  • Lovem or Hatem

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #83

    So, apparently the statement from BZG today is not news according to Keith Downie.

  • ToonRich

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:41 PM

    Comment #84
  • c-dog

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:51 PM

    Comment #85

    I think Daniel Ling said it’s on

  • Tom1664

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:52 PM

    Comment #86

    I need twitter to stop teasing and just have the takeover announced already.

    I’m nursing a space-hopper sized pair of blue balls from all the false hope so far.

  • Lovem or Hatem

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #87

    @ c-dog

    Nah! – Matthew Tan says Joselu said it’s on

  • BENNY 10

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #88

    This twitter row unfolding with Keith is making the whole thing even more surreal if that’s possible. Only with Newcastle. The way the British media have reported on this is a disgrace, you’d wonder what they actually gain from pandering to Ashely so much

  • toon22

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #89

    I’m sold

    100% proof


  • lesh

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:55 PM

    Comment #90


    Sorry to labour it, but those Kenyon-like words puzzle me. Sorry, but I can’t see the CEO uttering them. The language and sentiment worries me.

    If BZG are really pushing to close the deal and Ashley’s jo to his tricks, the statement wouldn’t have given him the get out. If they had said that BDG are keen and left it at that, I’d have felt easier about it.

    Ok, Redding may have met BZG but could he have done so with a pre-drafted statement for discussion and sign off – thus becoming their quotable words.

  • lochinvar

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:57 PM

    Comment #91

    Daniel Ling
    is Author of ‘Complete Design Thinking Guide for Successful Professionals’

    It’s a good read so inspired me to publish a follow up titled
    ‘ Wishful thinking…. and the thoughts of how to succeed in the kingdom of football by deluded green amphibians’

    £9.99 available on Amazon and all good book stores.
    All proceeds will go to NUFC Independent Fans Buying Group

  • AshLIE is a Joker

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:59 PM

    Comment #92


    The problem is Keith isn’t saying anything when people question Asslies hold on Sky.

    I’m tempted to ask if he knows of the repercussions of false reporting in Dubai.

  • Muz

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:59 PM

    Comment #93

    Downie now saying on Twitter that he doesn’t believe Peter Redding to be credible as a source. He’s just epically clamped by a guy posting a tweet from his Sky colleague Pete Graves saying he can 100% vouch for Peter Redding.

    If anything, the takeover is proving some entertainment on twitter this evening 😀

  • jon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 4:59 PM

    Comment #94

    My Take…….


    Deal isbasically done, but not signed off, BZG ready to sign, tw@t, purposely holding off as one more twist of the knife and the final two fingered salute to the fans…….he’s holding off for as long as possible in order to make player signings more difficult due to time constraints…..


    And with that, time for a pre sale celebratory pint.


  • mac the jaffrey

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #95

    Anyone on chopper watch? Actually got sucked in by it yesterday and ended up getting the app and spotting all the planes going overhead with me grandson!

    A very welcome distraction

  • Muz

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #96

    You can’t make this up either, Downie says that and has today started following Peter Redding on twitter…classic

  • Lu-toon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #97

    For what its worth i really think the takeover is happening… even by the Horrible Lard Arse standards the club is totally rudderless and destined to crash and burn
    This is HLA last stand…. he is selling up but leaving the new owners as little time as possible to get a decent manager and players in
    He wants rid of the club and the the horrible smug cnut will still want to watch us suffer once he somehow gets his fat arse out the door

  • RobLeenio

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #98

    Right, some random Singaporean has said that Joselu said it’s on, having posted a photo which may or may not have been taken today or possibly March, whilst he was wearing a black hoody that someone said looked familiar as he was standing in front of the Emirates ticket desk and behind a sign for some very expensive sausage rolls at Newcastle Airport (possibly having mistaken arrivals for departures).



  • DAVE..TOON..9

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:06 PM

    Comment #99

    Today is the day !!!!! ASHLEY OOT

  • naptoon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:06 PM

    Comment #100

    Its like we dont exist on ssn

  • RobLeenio

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:09 PM

    Comment #101

    lesh, I don’t know mate – the statement was essentially released in order to give us a smile on our faces and to put a spring in our step, to help us hope that the next time we see Lard Boy and his faithful minions we’ll be able to nudge each other, smile and say “eeeh, do you remember when we weren’t able to spend £300 Million on the likes of Mbappe every Summer”.

    It’s a statement full of hope, positivity and promise. That’s what I’m clinging to, not some cobblers from Peter bloomin’ Kenyon which had some of the same themes.

    These BZG guys know for a fact that Ashley is holding the weakest hand now, they’ve done that to him, but unless he chucks in his cards, there’s a chance he table flips and walks out of the casino. They have to be nice to him in public, because, at the end of the day, he’s a massive bell end!

  • Nostradamus " Mike Ashley The Clown "

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #102

    Nice Tracey, banning Mike, how about all owners of business just do a blanket ban on Mike Ashley and any known associates.
    They can all put it in the local Gazette, show MA is not welcome in the city of Newcastle.
    Dictators need an army Mike to be the big man on campus, we have one, where’s yours.

  • Mund

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:11 PM

    Comment #103

    I can’t help but get excited I’m holding most of it back tho but i do believe it’s happening.

    I think with the quotes that redding released today was BZG fighting back putting pressure on Ashley. The last week there’s been snippets of rumours being negative towards BZG and the takeover basically calling them frauds. Today I think BZG are saying we have done all we can it’s on Ashley now.

    I hope and pray it gets done and we hear an announcement this week but anything can happen with Ashley so I guess time will tell.

    And here goes another week of torture what a horrendous cycle this is to be in.

  • RobLeenio

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:14 PM

    Comment #104

    Statement from Peter Redding on Twitter:

    “The BZG quote is direct from the CEO”

    Headline from The Mag:

    “Confirmed that Monday morning Bin Zayed Group takeover ‘statement’ is from BZG Managing Director”

    I mean, how dim to you have to be to read ‘CEO’ and write ‘Managing Director’? These are two different people, FFS!

    And I wonder why I rarely bother with The Mag any more.

  • geordietom

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:15 PM

    Comment #105

    TOON22 …

    you still sound angry … have the wheels come off your bus again… give it a f…ing rest will you …

  • toon22

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:17 PM

    Comment #106

    The Mile will make more money with him gone


  • Our Toon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:19 PM

    Comment #107

    The statements released today are what’s expected when 2 parties are still negotiating, BZG dont want to go against the NDA hence little substance, they also dont want to piss off MA hence the complementary quotes.

    Dont see why anyone is expecting them to come out and give a detailed explanation as to where it all is. Obviously the credibility is something which non of us can validate unfortunately

  • proudtobageordie

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:19 PM

    Comment #108

    Bob hope no hope this is all getting very annoying now. The FCB is having our eyes out and destroying our souls how much more can we take…………..

  • welshy14

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:20 PM

    Comment #109

    who actually is the CEO cause no one has that job title on Bloomberg? it’s not something a know much about to be fair ha

  • Our Toon

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:23 PM

    Comment #110

    It clearly isnt going to happen though, it’s taken far to long in my opinion and it sounds as though the last bit of both sides wont be at fault is a softening tone to fans.

  • proudtobageordie

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:23 PM

    Comment #111

    Simple question can anyone answer it

    If a takeover is happening can the selling party sell assets, ie players

  • Toon222

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:24 PM

    Comment #112


    Hope ur right, could take 1 more twist of the knife if it guarantees fatty goin

    But until then fans must unite and boycott


  • Captain AmeriMag

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:25 PM

    Comment #113

    Apologies for my absence today good citizens!

    Captain AmeriMag’s powers of positivity were needed elsewhere, Motivation Monday at my Shill Rehab Centre (really I was just busy at work!)

    Hoss says it’s on so it’s definitely on!!


    Flight N9895 is landing in Boston soon. If it’s scheduled to fly back to London or even better Newcastle today or tomorrow it’s can cracking time!!

  • Mund

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:25 PM

    Comment #114

    Do you think maybe BZG have delayed the takeover on purpose? A thought came to me that maybe it was true they didn’t want Benítez and wanted Mourinho as rumours say, so they purposely waited till his contract ran down waited a little while till the uproar of the fans calmed a little then swoop in with an announcement of the takeover with Mourinho as our new manager!!!

    To be truthful I’m as devastated as the next fan with us losing Benítez but I tell you I’d forget all about the messiah and just have great memories if the above come true.

  • droppy in Wallsend

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:25 PM

    Comment #115


    The reason I no longer read the Mag is because it’s as much use as Boiled egg Lee in a transfer window.

  • geordietom

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:26 PM

    Comment #116

    TOON22… @ 52 …

    but we as you keep saying dont believe you want rid of the fat one …

    your bus lost its wheels yet ?…

  • oldarse

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:28 PM

    Comment #117

    I’m sitting back and reading this blog and let me tell you this is amazing the blog has erupted its brilliant theatre keep it up we will get there cheers for the entertainment

  • lochinvar

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:30 PM

    Comment #118

    Nothing will happen until the squad is in China.
    That’s the key to all this.

  • geordietom

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:31 PM

    Comment #119

    is downie at the toon at this moment ?…

  • Mund

    Jul 8, 2019 at 5:31 PM

    Comment #120


    You think Mourinho being in China is significant?


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