This article has been prompted by a recent experience I had with the new supporter group on the block who are strangely named – ‘United for Newcastle’
Now let me just start off by saying that these are my own views and do not represent this site in general or anyone else’s opinions. If people agree or disagree then that’s absolutely fine, that’s why we all come together to have our say and give our opinions.
When I first heard about United for Newcastle, it was actually on this very blog. It was a write up from Toonsy which you can read here if you didn’t catch it at the time.
I agreed with the goals of the supporters club and supported what they were trying to achieve. They were going about it a sensible way and actually managed to gain a meeting with the clubs hierarchy to get a few important questions answered, which you can read here
As you can see, all positive stuff. I thought that if UFN kept this up, we would start to get a lot more communication with the club which is something that we haven’t had since the days of Chris Mort being around.
Why did the club agree to speak with them in the first place and not NUST?
Simple, NUST went in all guns blazing and UFN took a measured, sensible approach which struck a chord with the board. After the initial meeting, UFN then gained another interview within the club regarding the re-location of the singing section which again proved positive.
Due to the success of the meetings with the upper echelons at St. James’ Park, UFN grew quite a following and have increased their support ten-fold. Since then, it’s all been downhill.
Due to them finding that their voice is heard, they have decided to start circulating rumours, hearsay and comments in the media which portray the board in a negative light. It just seems like reporting sensationalist news stories and generating traffic on their facebook page is their new goal.
How is this going to increase communication with the board? Surely they know that the board aren’t going to entertain a group who constantly slander them, which is the reason NUST never got a look in. UFN seem to now be an Anti-Ashley group and it’s of their own doing.
Wow, fat lot of good that’s going to do.
Now don’t get me wrong, this article isn’t pro-Ashley or pro-Board. I just think that their original approach in gaining the meetings was their unique selling point which will now be lost. If Newcastle are doing well in league and we are winning games, who actually cares? We support the team in the hope we win games, not the individuals who pay the wages. Not only have they lost their unique selling point, but their new one becomes irrelevant to the average Joe Bloggs fan.
I recently exchanged some direct dialogue with the group which went as follows:
Moreno: “UFN – Out of interest, what is you goals over the coming months? What are you setting out to achieve?”
UFN: “June will see us launch an official website which we hope will help us grow as an organisation. The website may also make a membership scheme a possibility.
The coming months will mainly be about growing as an organisation and becoming an Football Supporters Federation and Supporters Direct recognised supporter group.
We feel these short-term goals are achievable.”
Moreno – “What’s the advantage in being a supporters group though? Are you Anti-Ashley?”
UFN replied – “As a supporter group Moreno, we won’t only be for Newcastle fans that are opposed to his ownership. We can be for Newcastle supporters across the world, no matter what they think of Ashley.
As our status the other day suggested, his summer will be judgement day for Ashley amongst a lot of Newcastle fans. If he doesn’t spend the money that desperately needs to be spent – we (and hopefully our followers) will be ready to take action.”
I think this really says it all.
I would be interested to hear on what action they plan to take? Raise money through membership fees to buy the club maybe? 😆 Ask fans to boycott SJP? It’s been tried by louder voices than them and failed miserably.
Recently, on an article they have posted regarding their ‘source’ telling everyone Shearer’s Bar was being re-named I posted this –
““Another complete farce from United for Newcastle inciting hatred against the club.
“We’ve heard” – who from? Phil Thompson?
When you guys first started, I thought you were a breath of fresh air. I really thought you were going to be able to represent the fans in dialogue with the club.
You had a really successful first meeting and reported back to the fans. What a victory! The club speaking to the fans after such an amnesty!
Since then, all you have done is circulate sensationalist news stories with absolutely no facts what so ever and rile the fans hatred towards the board. What chance have you got of meeting the board and representing our view now? None. Makes you as pointless as the other fan organisation.
What’s your ultimate goal? To provoke a fan uprising? As that’s how you are coming across.
You need to learn that people are always going to have their say behind a keyboard, when it comes to putting their hand it their pockets or physically taking action will they all be behind you? No.
AST (Arsenal supporter trust) have a great relationship and power with the board members as they engage in sensible dialogue and don’t print any old ridiculous stories that ‘they hear’
Going about this the wrong way, feel you have lost sight of why you even set up in the first place, this is of course, just my opinion but I am sure the people who want to see the club at peace and successful and not having internal battles, will agree.”
This comment was deleted upon being noticed with no reply. Must have hit pretty close to the mark?
Now yes, maybe I was fishing for a bite a little bit but remember “We can be for Newcastle supporters across the world, no matter what they think of Ashley.”
Hmmmm, is that why you are censoring fans views on your page if they don’t mirror your own? Funny that… I went on to say:
““I see my comment was deleted. Some supporter group you are. Someone has an opinion you don’t agree with and you remove it. Censorship on your page, why not try to defend against what I said instead of removing it?
Hardly setting an example to any potential followers that you run away when you hear something you don’t like. What a joke.
No doubt this will be deleted too.”
Again, deleted without reply. If they really want fans to back them when they decide to take action when everything ‘apparantly’ inevitably turns to shit, are they going to be this spineless and lack fight? Imagine someone at the board throws something at them a bit harder than what I did, what they going to do? Cry and hide under the table until it goes away?
I am not saying that there is no truth in any of the rumours. I am just saying that I didn’t realise they were set up to circulate rumours to get the fans riled against the board, I thought they were set up to make themselves heard.
You can’t make yourself heard if no one’s there to listen.