I thought I would write a little piece on our not so glorious owner Mike Ashley.
Why exactly is he portrayed as the evil dictator who has destroyed our club? What has he actually done wrong? Does he deserve all the flak he gets?
Now of course much of this relies on opinion. This is mine but please feel free to counter any points I make in the process of this. So what I’m going to do is have a look through what he has actually done and see if it really is as bad as a lot of people make out. I think I will start by countering some points made about his “diabolical ownership” this summer.
Transfers – We signed two players this summer. A French teenager who will probably be in our development squad for a few years before he gets a sniff at the first team and Loic Remy on a temporary basis. Remy has started like a house on fire and has improved the team greatly.
The fact that we signed five (yes five) players in January had a big effect on our summer mainly because we did a few of the deals planned earlier than expected. Our squad is (in my opinion) twice as good as it was at the start of last season and with Loic Remy a lot more effective than last season.
Since our promotion back to the Premier League we have improved the team gradually with very shrewd signings at relatively little expense so I don’t get why there is so much negativity regarding our transfer activity. I strongly believe we have one of the best transfer systems in the country with a very good scouting system in place. All down to Mike Ashley and Graham Carr.
Joe Kinnear – Most fans wanted Ashley to get a “football man” to help him run the club. Oh boy did he listen… A big talking point this summer was the appointment of “fans favourite” Joe Kinnear. He revealed all in a TalkSport interview to the disgust of most Newcastle fans. The interviews that followed had some crackers in them. He really does have a very bad memory (poor bloke).
Despite this I don’t think he would have been given a chance in the job by many fans if any at all and certainly had no chance with the media who laid into him the last time he was with us. I love that interview and the gutter press deserved every bit of abuse they got.
As I have already said we improved our team over the summer so that has to go down as a good job Joe though I won’t fully judge him until a few windows pass. I think that is very fair as we have nothing to go on regarding his job performance, as this is his first DoF job. Give the guy a chance to do his job and then judge him on what he does.
Sports Direct – I have no issue with the SD adverts around St James’ Park, in fact I pay them very little attention. The only valid argument of the lot against Ashley is the fact that he doesn’t pay for his advertising which I can’t really dispute against, it is a bit of a joke. Though I will say this, Mike has given the club an interest free loan which he could have made millions from. These two things have nothing to do with each other but for one to be brought up so should the other.
Wonga – This would have been an absolute non-issue if we were sitting comfortably in the top eight last season. It seems to me this is a very weak excuse to beat Ashley with. We can discuss the pros and cons of Wonga all day long and get nowhere. It’s a business deal to the club and that’s it. Being sponsored by Wonga doesn’t turn us into morally corrupt humans.
Alan Pardew/Ambition – Now this is the big issue which has split the fans into even smaller sections. Is Mike showing no ambition by keeping faith in Alan Pardew? Alan had a very good season and a very poor one. During the good season a lot of things went right for us and we got extremely lucky on a number of occasions. During our bad season the opposite happened we were plagued with injuries everything seemed to go wrong at the worst times. Was it Alan Pardew’s Fault or was it circumstance is the debatable issue here.
Mike Ashley clearly thinks it was down to circumstance and has given Pardew another year at least. He wants stability and progression in my view, not stop-start like that crowd down the road, which I think is fair enough. We will see how that gamble pays off at the end of the season. Will he hire Joe Kinnear if Pardew leaves? Nobody knows and how this has been perceived as a certainty is laughable, Mike is being judged on things he hasn’t even done yet. I am going to put my neck on the line here and say I don’t think that Joe will get the job once/if Pardew goes
Now these seem to be the major issues that we as fans have had the biggest problem with in recent times. I think all of them have been made to look far far worse by the media and in fact some of them are complete BS that suit the narrative so fans fuel the fire.
He has started to try and communicate with the fans more effectively, which was a very big issue with some, and the recent meeting the fans had with the club seemed to go very well and it answered a few good questions about what’s going on at the club.
I don’t know if anyone seen the proposal Newcastle made to the Premier League about away ticket pricing, but I thought it was a very good idea and would encourage more people to travel to away games by making them much more affordable.
I will talk quickly about his loan as there seems to be a lot of misconceptions about it. Mike Ashley inherited the debt of the last regime which he paid off with his own money then transferred the debt to the club (interest free loan he gave the club to pay the debt). He has not took back any of the initial loan back and will not until he leaves/sells the club. When we were relegated he had to put another £28 million which he is getting back within the next few years. The only money he has taken from the club is the relegation debt he paid off.
I could list a whole load of things that Mike Ashley has done for our club but I don’t want to bore you as much as I already have (forgive me it’s my first article ever)
What is you personally the biggest issue you have with Mike Ashley running of the club?
Written by Santii