They say football is an expensive game and whoever ‘they’ are, they’re not wrong.
In the pursuit of glory, often those with the fattest wallets win, particularly when it comes to chasing a return to the promised land of the Premier League.
That is because it has been revealed that last season, the Magpies spent more on wages than any other side in the history of the Football League, but the gamble ended up being a remarkable success which could have back-fired dramatically had it all gone pear shaped.
Figures released showed that Newcastle spent a whopping £112.2m on wages on their way to earning promotion back to the Premier League last season with a loss of £90.9m along the way.
That £112.2m figure is almost twice that amount that both Brighton and Huddersfield each spent in their promotion campaigns.
Despite a number of key players leaving the club following relegation including Georginio Wijnaldum and Moussa Sissoko, £50m was still spent on players during the Magpies stint in the second division.
Newcastle sources claim that that kind of spending was only possible due to the ‘financial support’ of Mike Ashley and that is some investment from a man ridiculed for a lack of investment in the club.
One can only assume that the man in charge plucked a few winners on a couple of bitcoin betting sites in order to fund such a spree. However, the reality is Ashley was desperate to get the Magpies back in the big time in order to find a suitable buyer at an inflated price.
Newcastle’s sale price in the Championship would have lost Ashley far more than £90m with the valuation of the club a fraction of what the club is now worth as a mid-table Premier League side.
For all concerned, it appears Mike Ashley’s gambled has paid dividends even if the Sports Direct owner is still in charge despite an unsuccessful reported sale to Amanda Staveley’s consortium.
For the first time in a long time, it appears there is relative calm on Tyneside but there is one niggling issue that needs to be sorted out quickly.
That is ensuring that the man behind guiding the team to the Championship title last term and the top half of the Premiership this season stays at the club.
West Ham United have made it clear that they are trying to prise Rafael Benítez away from St James Park and Benitez has made it clear to Ashley he wants assurances over funds for next season to make the Magpies vie for at least the Europa League spots.
A few reports have suggested that Rafa is holding out for a £100m war chest and £6m a year salary however how much truth is in that is debatable.
However, one thing we do know is that Mike Ashley has offered a £50m transfer pot for the season and any cash from the sales of players.
Whether that is enough for Rafa remains to be seen but early reports suggest Benitez would rather stay at the Magpies than head to the Hammers.
For now, we can only wait for the story to develop.