An open letter to Mike Ashley by Dubai Toon

Dear Mike,

I don’t expect that you will ever read this, but I’m going to write it anyway. It is not a letter to tell you to sell Newcastle United or to tell you how much I dislike you (I don’t) or to leave our club alone. No, I have a lot of respect for your success, but I just want to put some things into perspective from a different viewpoint regarding ownership of a premiership football club.

The first bit of perspective is that there are roughly 7.5 Billion people on this planet at the moment, and there are just 20 Premiership football teams. So, out of those 7.5 Billion people, only 20 will ever be in the privileged position to be able to own a football club in the English Premier league at one time. (Ok, so some clubs are owned by companies, or groups of people, but perhaps you understand the point). You, as the owner of NUFC, are in fact, 1 of those incredibly privileged people.

The second bit of perspective is something you already know, and that is you are incredibly successful and have some billions of pounds at your disposal. Not all cash assets of course, but even so, there is likely to be a few quid spare. You are clearly an incredibly talented and shrewd businessman to achieve what you have and to build this from nothing. However, why do we ultimately want to earn money? Here, I can only speak from my own perspective, but there may be some parallels.

I don’t look at my bank balance every day and think, wow, look how much money I have. It’s not the money itself that is important, in my view, it’s what that money allows us to do in order to improve our lives and lifestyles. More money may allow us to have a better holiday, a nicer house, go to better restaurants, buy nicer cars, work fewer hours to spend more time with our family, etc. The money itself, whether it is a few hundred, a few thousand or indeed millions or billions, is not the endpoint, it is a means to an end.

My bank balance is considerably less than yours, but I am sure you are the same essentially, the money is a means to an end, rather than the endpoint itself. Bigger houses, buying a yacht or diamonds for your wife, go to the casino without any worries, buying another company or indeed being in the position to buy a football club. Just, in perspective, a better lifestyle than the one you had 20 or 30 years ago. I could easily spend everything I own in hours or days if I’m not careful. You, however, would struggle to spend all that money before you die, even if you live another 50 years.

So, back to the football club and NUFC. You are one of 20 people out of 7.5 billion. You are in a super, unique position to have the real thing instead of a Playstation or Xbox. You have a very exclusive, wealthy man’s plaything, and you have a choice. You can play with it, nurture it, take it to the heights and make it the best it can be and enjoy it. Or, you can pull its arms and legs off, twist it’s head off and watch it wither and die. There are some owners in the premiership that do the former, and some that do the latter.

Newcastle United is not just another business, Mike. You do not have thousands of people buying season tickets to go and shop in Sports Direct. There are not thousands of people all around the world, waiting and waiting for Saturday to come around so they can stand in front of a Sports Direct shop, enter, and buy a pair of training shoes or a pair of shorts.

What do you have in your hands, Mike? Well, you have a city, a nation of faithful supporters, an army around the world to whom Newcastle United is an identity, a way of life, a connection to home when they are far away (like Dubai). The great Sir Bobby Robson put it in a way no one else could; “What is a club in any case? Not the buildings or the directors or the people who are paid to represent it. It’s not the television contracts, get-out clauses, marketing departments or executive boxes. It’s the noise, the passion, the feeling of belonging, the pride in your city. It’s a small boy clambering up stadium steps for the very first time, gripping his father’s hand, gawping at that hallowed stretch of turf beneath him and, without being able to do a thing about it, falling in love.”

I’m sure you must be able to understand this. You owe your lifestyle to Sports, you chose to buy a Football club, rather than something else, so sport must be in your blood, as it is in mine. Use NUFC for your pleasure, enjoy it. You have it in your hands to give pleasure to the millions of fans around the world, put some money into it, not to make more profit, but to nurture it, feed it, help it grow and make it as good as it can be and enjoy it because you can. You have an incredible Manager, even more incredible fan base and a stadium many clubs would die for in the heart of a football city. You have 125 years of heritage and a whole city behind you.

I am just 1 of those fans. There are thousands like me. Not just the 52,000 that come week after week, rain or shine, win or lose to St James’ Park, but many more thousands around the world. Believe me when I say that what you put into our club, you will take out a thousand-fold in good feeling, warmth and happiness.

A final thought. Even if it is still just a ‘business’ to you and an advertising medium for Sports Direct, then think of this; Associative marketing. Sports Direct branding associated with a struggling club, losing and at the bottom end of the league, or Sports Direct associated with a Champions league team, winning and competing at the top.

You still have time. Try it and give Rafa what he needs. Enjoy what you and only 19 others out of 7.5 Billion are privileged to enjoy on a weekly basis. Be the owner that you can be, invest, use that money in your bank account to enjoy what you have, and please make Newcastle United great again.

A true Black and White Toon Army Fan

This open letter was penned by passionate lifelong Toon supporter Dubai Toon, who regularly contributes to this blog and follows his team’s every move from far, far away.

About Shamrock

Like everyone here, support Newcastle United. Not the easiest side to feel good about at times, but it's our side!

124 thoughts on “An open letter to Mike Ashley by Dubai Toon

  1. I’d sell Shelvey if he keeps up like this but I cant see us replacing him in time.

    Icedog will be happy to see his ginger nugget back in the side 😎

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  2. Stem:
    He was terrible for Sunderland last season Kim.

    Aye mate, so I heard, wasn’t impressed today tbh, still early days and under pressure cause of jon jo’s action.

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  3. I thought Manquillo had a decent game. Colback won’t be back. Merino will play the Shelvey role probably better than him, maybe a fair bit better than the tosser.. Even Diame will be in before Colback. Any injury updates?

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  4. georgio:
    I thought Manquillo had a decent game. Colback won’t be back. Merino will play the Shelvey role probably better than him, maybe a fair bit better than the tosser.. Even Diame will be in before Colback. Any injury updates?

    Ali went passed him with ease for the first but the whole team under pressure after jonjo so as I said early days yet.

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  5. Mark Douglas‏Verified account @MsiDouglas · 4m4 minutes ago

     More

    Benitez felt Kane’s tackle on Lejeune was ‘worse’ than Alli’s and he deserved to be sent off. Poch ‘they were different’

    agree with Rafa

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  6. So… Lejune on crutches, no AM for a few weeks and Benitez not sure if we will be active in the market this week. Not looking good.

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  7. kimtoon:
    Mark Douglas‏Verified account @MsiDouglas · 4m4 minutes ago

     More

    Benitez felt Kane’s tackle on Lejeune was ‘worse’ than Alli’s and he deserved to be sent off. Poch ‘they were different’

    agree with Rafa

    I agree too Kim, Kane’s tackle was a shocker that took our player out the game. Should’ve been a red.

    Watching Man U vs Wet Spam, they will murder us in this form if we don’t strengthen. ☹️☹️☹️

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  8. Guys, sorry being negative, but I feel this is just a start. We will lose, lose, lose and lose, until the Winter window when Ashley allows to buy some players to avoid relegation again. I am not watching the games of this season. I love Toon and Rafa, but I love myself more. My heart just can not take it.

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  9. shamrock:
    So… Lejune on crutches, no AM for a few weeks and Benitez not sure if we will be active in the market this week. Not looking good.

    great, so Kane knacks our CB and the pundits are blind oh and the ref deems it a yellow. nothing changes in the PL does it.

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  10. I was not in favour of signing Atsu but admit today he had a terrific game. Shelvey I would get rid of This is not the first time he has lost his rag. Today he let down his teammates and the fans and he was the captain. At least it gave us a chance to see Merino whose passing was better. Kane should have got a red for his tackle on Lejeune. What was Marriner playing at? Elliot’s kicking was awful. Thought we had Krul back in goal. High balls to small players like Atsu and Gayle just surrender possession. Some good performances but lacking punch up front. Perez too lightweight for me. Lascelles and Mbemba were good stand ins. Good job we didn’t sell Mbemba. Not too pessimistic about the future yet.

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  11. Well I’ve backed Shelvey on here many a time when some have knocked him – but from here on in **** um!!
    That was OUR free kick he was trying to get the ball for and he goes and does something like that!!.
    He was CAPTAIN today as well – he lost us the bloody game the clown.

    I hope Merino comes in these 3 games he’s banned and has a blinder, and Shelvey rots on the bench. He talks about England, but why would any England manager select a walking red card.

    Injuries are awful today as well – Dummetts hamstring so early – did he warm up properly?!.

    Kane’s challenge was a scissor tackle – it’s a straight red card.

    Main positive (of not many) was Atsu for me – he looked a real danger down that left flank.

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  12. He is my dream team Captain this week Kim. At least there is a silver lining to today in football terms!

    Oh one point about Ashley. He said he would not leave until we win something. What does that mean if he can’t or wont invest in the playing side? Just **** off and let someone else have a go if you cant invest, cant run the ship properly and know that winning anything is out of reach for you!

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  13. Sharpy17:
    Well I’ve backed Shelvey on here many a time when some have knocked him – but from here on in **** um!!
    That was OUR free kick he was trying to get the ball for and he goes and does something like that!!.
    He was CAPTAIN today as well – he lost us the bloody game the clown.

    I hope Merino comes in these 3 games he’s banned and has a blinder, and Shelvey rots on the bench.He talks about England, but why would any England manager select a walking red card.

    Injuries are awful today as well – Dummetts hamstring so early – did he warm up properly?!.

    Kane’s challenge was a scissor tackle – it’s a straight red card.

    Main positive (of not many) was Atsu for me – he looked a real danger down that left flank.

    I thought about England earlier. He has no chance now. Does not matter how well he plays when he comes back.. Southgate will always that niggle in the back of his mind that Shelvey is one rash decision from knocking his side out of qualifying or a competition. Simply cant take the chance.

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  14. He never had a chance to be selected anyway,plays for wrong team. What slim chance there was has now surely gone. If I was England manager I wouldn’t touch the lad because of his petulance.
    God I hope Merino is the real deal, really don’t want Shelvey back in the side, he’ll cost us time and time again. It wasn’t even a stamp, just a step on the ankle, strictly speaking Kanes was far worse, that was a good old fashioned reducer imo. All the same shelvey gave the ref a decision to make as did Kane but he’s Englands golden boy.
    End of the day Kane’s tackle left our player crocked and Ali went onto score moments after being stepped on.

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  15. Telegraph.co.uk has an excellent photo of Kane’s tackle. Clearly a red. A very dangerous leg breaking tackle.

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  16. Groucho:
    Telegraph.co.uk has an excellent photo of Kane’s tackle. Clearly a red. A very dangerous leg breaking tackle.

    not according to Neville & co 🙄

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  17. Ashley is full of BS . Says he wants us to produce more Andy Carrolls from the academy which he’d like to develop like Saints have. If that’s true why have we just let one of our hot prospects bugger off to Everton.

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  18. Says was gutted we just missed out on 3rd under pards and if we’d gotten it could of invested money back into the club. Aye that’ll be why when we finished 5th, he let us stagnate rather than invest to try next season for that 3rd spot.

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  19. Says sorry to KK, Says he should of had the right people around him to help him, yet it’s well documented how KK was lied to about cash available and who he could sign. KK set up two deals which everyone was on board with , player ,agent , fee agreed then club went in and offered much less than agreed. I see similarities now with Rafa who worked hard on early deals this window only to see the players not join .

    Feels like a PR stunt by Mike to cover himself in case Rafa walks, he knows the fans would go ape **** if he does.

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  20. I dont know if the fans would Kim. Look at all the massive liberties he has taken over the years. The fans have always gone back in their droves.

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  21. shamrock:
    I dont know if the fans would Kim. Look at all the massive liberties he has taken over the years. The fans have always gone back in their droves.

    true mate.

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  22. Well, we have a couple of weeks until the window closes. I expect nothing now, but let’s see if anyone comes in. I just hope Lejeune is ok. Memories of Haidara… ? I wish Kane could be retrospectively banned, but since he got a yellow, that’s it. Stupid rule.

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  23. Funrafa I feel exactly the same mate. I was listening to radio 5 live as I don’t have sky. They did say Elliot’s distribution was like giving spurs the ball back. Astu had a great game. We also defended very well making it hard for Kane etc. I am scared of Huddersfield as well. They’re a very good passing side like Swansea.

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  24. We do need a striker. I fear for us without a experienced PL striker. I don’t mind the championship at all tbh. Its a break from getting beat most weeks. Knowing Ashley he will play with fire.

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  25. Well if we do badly and drop then our owner gets what he deserves. He says he doesn’t see anyone coming in for the club but maybe he is asking too much cause actually he doesn’t wanna sell at all.
    His company gets free global advertising and he admitted to shepperd that the club was going to be to help push his brand globally. He was never in it for the football .

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  26. His admitted stupidity/naivety cost us two relegations and meant borrowing more money from him. The club is actually in more debt than when he bought us albeit interest free.

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  27. Stem , Gayle will not last the season and we are two to three injuries away from disaster. Need to shift the dross and get some decent additions asap.

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  28. Kim I was reading TDS messages the other day and my god its depressing but true.
    We have so much deadwood that clubs don’t want or cant afford there wages. Tbh we have no choice buy a striker or get relegated its that simple.

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  29. Stem:
    Kim I was reading TDS messages the other day and my god its depressing but true.
    We have so much deadwood that clubs don’t want or cant afford there wages.Tbh we have no choice buy a striker or get relegated its that simple.

    inclined to agree mate, gutted about Lejeune today too, poor guy .

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  30. If not, then that is disgusting. Also he says the fans did not want the stadium renamed because they hold tradition over finance for the team. Is that true? It was renamed after SD and as far as I know, NO money was paid to the club for it. Was the issue with fans not the renaming, but the blatant SD hoarding board for free?If it had been the Nike stadium for a couple of years and worth a couple of players a season, Im sure we could have lived with it?

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  31. Big problem for us is that Shelvey is our only creative centre mid player. We will miss him no doubt about it. But he’s a complete tit!

    Ashley’s talk is just gibberish.

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  32. Stories seem to be escalating for Joselu from Stoke…. how far have we fallen that we are now taking Stoke’s cast offs. ??. He may be ok, and right now I think we will take anything to get a striker in, but rather underwhelmed.

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