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. Nice letter will he read it I doubt it if he does would he change his ways with the club no,he maybe has people close to him have told him so but he will do it his way.when he first came he went into the city and sat and drank with fans imo he wants to be liked but at the same time he cannot stand fans loving Rafa,KK, Big Al ect more than they like him so he will enjoy hurting the fans/club as long as it makes enough money to keep going he will carry on doing what he does,being a season ticket holder for many years I gave it up after a couple yrs of him owning it I now chose which match I go to when I want and will never re-new it until he’s gone,just my little jester

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  2. Dubai you are a star. However Fatman is a bloke who neither cares nor supports our wonderful club. So when you realise that a lot of what you wrote is completely lost on the Corpulent One it’ll help reduce your hopes and dreams to a smattering of “let’s just hope we can survive” because Fatman is too busy spending money down the pub, on other business ventures and most of all anything that isnt NUFC related.

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  3. Good impassioned letter but I disagree with you on one major element, ‘essentially, the money is a means to an end, rather than the endpoint itself. ‘ Regrettably, on that point you are wrong in the case of many business people. The accumulation of wealth becomes in itself an insatiable hunger which can only be fed by the acquisition of more. Is this true of Mr Ashley? I don’t know but I have my thoughts.

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  4. Great letter Dubai. Mr Ashley, grow your club! It need not be a case of blowing loads of cash on recruitment, but get the brand going across the globe. Sooo many Countries and markets to tap into! The rest will follow after that.

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  5. Nice one Dubai, I hope he gets to read it and understands how much the club means to all of us.
    He has had it in his power since day one to make us a good competitive side, sadly he has tried and failed to understand how to go about this, clearly demonstrated by the poor succession of decisions he’s made. Whether it be poor managers, cheap foreign buys sold the club as a stepping stone or failure to adequately invest at the right time , it all adds up to us actually going backwards in stature. When we finally get a quality manager in Rafa , I actually thought Mike had seen the light, but it seems he is on a very different path to our coach and the old woes and concerns are always bubbling under. Seems to me Mike and the club have run their course, like a bad marriage they should of divorced years ago.

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  6. Thanks all for the nice comments! I was looking at the top of the home page to see if it was there and couldn’t find it it first. Of course I realise Ash will never see it and if he did, wouldn’t take any notice. Thanks to all for the words of agreement.

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  7. When I came back on this site today, I had to go back to Ollie’s thread to get the link for this thread. I cannot see a link to this one on the main page anywhere. Frustrating since I cannot leave this thread up for too long as when I return it will not respond and freeze on me. This is an ongoing problem with this site for some reason. I just reopen link but this one isn’t up so it’s a lot of pallava going to previous thread first. Am I missing it, I have looked all over main home page.

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  8. I cannot see it on the main page either Kim. Shamrock posted this up for me, but maybe Ollie or other admin needs to add it to the featured articles list so the rest of the regulars can see it…

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  9. Dubai, on the last thread olly did there is a link to this thread at the bottom of the page and also one Sham put up on actual thread. It really ought to be on main page save going to previous thread.
    Really excited for today, really hope we give a good account of ourselves.

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  10. Yeah they have changed the format, so I have no idea how to get threads onto the main page under featured articles. I did explain this on olly’s article in the hope somebody would read it and a) fix it and b) let me know how it is done these days. Until then, this is the best I can do…

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  11. Good letter and I agree for the most part. Personally I think he just needs to sell up to someone who has the ambition and wherewithal to take the club forward.

    We’re going no where under him, never was and never will. The only surprise is that people are surprised how this is turning out this season.

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  12. Dubai – its spot on mate, and I’m pleased it didn’t get lost in the sites inbox. Very timely with what’s going on at the moment.

    I was reading some of Ashley’s interview on the SSN app this morning. The full interview is being shown on Sky in the next few days I think.

    He admits he’s made mistakes & got things wrong. It doesn’t fix the mistakes or right the wrongs – but personally, I have a little more respect for someone who will hold their hands up and admit they got it wrong – especially so publicly.
    Should he be working on helping Rafa fix things now – yes of course, and I’m sure he will. But this interview will maybe have been an hour out of his time – and actually, by admitting he was wrong – it might stick it to those pundits who said us geordies had/have unrealistic expectations.

    So now it’s about learning from those mistakes, and making sure we don’t start making a whole load of new ones. We didn’t strengthen when we got into Europe – is this gonna be a case of not strengthening now we are back in the PL. I hope not ??.

    Right off the watch the match in a Maltese sports bar ??

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  13. On another note. Can anyone come up with a reasonable explanation as to what is actually happening at the club? Why are we stuttering so badly in the transfer market? Why is Ashley not communicating with Rafa?

    It’s just all so very, very strange.

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  14. Stuart79:
    On another note. Can anyone come up with a reasonable explanation as to what is actually happening at the club? Why are we stuttering so badly in the transfer market? Why is Ashley not communicating with Rafa?

    It’s just all so very, very strange.

    Twas ever thus mate

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  15. Brilliant run from our 4×100 relay lads last night but such a sad way for Bolt to sign off.
    The ladies relay picking up the silver was great but for the lads to get the gold , wow.
    And Mo, totally spent and getting boxed in by the 3 Ethiopian’s in the final straight and then kicking on to snatch silver, utterly thrilling stuff. Just wish the sport was cleaner really, hard to totally believe in any athlete due to history of doping in the sport.

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  16. There’s no real communicators at the club. Charnley, Bishop, Barnes are totally silent. There’s nobody doing PR or keeping fans up to date. The local rag just get odd words hoyed at them in the car park (and build 8 articles out of it). Even good old Rafa speaks a lot and says next to nothing.
    Can lightening strike twice. A win today? I doubted it then and still do. But HTL!

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  17. So Jabba has told Sky he will listen to offers for the club. Although his asking price will be prohibitive I imagine.

    Personally think he’s bored of it and doesn’t need the hassle. He has SD to re build. It’s just his pride stopping him accepting a reasonable offer.

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  18. Stu – he has to make his mind up one way or another – either sale the club at a sensible price or cash in some of those shares and invest in the club.
    If there was a site in London he could convert into flats the ****er would cash his shares in them!!.

    Put up or get out coz this sob story of not being able to compete with Quatar goes so far. But dry your eyes fella, you’re still a billionaire!! – oh and I’d imagine if you cash £50m worth of your shares to invest in the club YOU bought, I bet you’re still a billionaire!!.
    But the outcome of that scenario would be that the fans that you have admitted ****ting on might actually have something to cheer about.

    My alternative open letter to Mr Mike ?

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  19. Just subscribed to sky sports for the season. Waiting for it to upload in time for the game!

    In the meantime watching Nantes V Marseille. Thauvin just had a good header. He looks a different player. Like he has grown up and stopped being a showpony.

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  20. Captain Lascelles on the bench.. Dont really get that. Captain should be in 1st team. Chose someone else if he is not up to scratch? Unless he is carrying an injury….

    Colback not in squad. Start for Manquillo. Gayle in team.

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  21. Gayle starts. It’s basically our Championship team + Loujuane and Manquillo. Rafa will need to be a miracle worker to keep us above the drop zone imo.

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  22. Its a string bench though. I can see the improvements. Just need 2 more in before end of month. Striker and playmaker please!

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  23. This thread is not showing on the main page??

    Good first half.. can see a definite game plan from Rafa and the lads..
    Pissed off with the injuries tho!

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  24. I have explained above why this is not in main page Aussie. Need rhe new guys to read comments occasionally, like on match days for example. Maybe even put up a match thread and check their inbox so as to not waste peoples time aka Dubai.

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  25. Well that’s 2 subs used up already so no options for real attacking changes. Kane’s tackle was bordering on a red card for me. He knew what he was doing.

    So one change left. Who do we bring on? Aaron’s, Mitro, Murphy, Merino? For me I think I’d bring on Aaron’s for Perez.

    0-0 at half time is ok, but we’ve had no chances on goal to speak of.

    I had to wriggle out of a meeting this afternoon so hope it was worth it.. I have an understanding boss.

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  26. Shamrock:
    I have explained above why this is not in main page Aussie. Need rhe new guys to read comments occasionally, like on match days for example. Maybe even put up a match thread and check their inbox so as to not waste peoples time aka Dubai.

    Thanks again for all your help and support mate. ?

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  27. It’s a pretty uninspiring game, but the aim is not to lose, and on that score it’s going well.

    With the forced substitutions, I don’t think Rafa has many options left but to keep it tight.

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  28. Sham, I just answered your “why is so quite question ”
    I know its not on the main page , i was kinda also questioning why it wasn’t. .

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  29. Dubai, Lejuene had robbed him of the ball and he didn’t like it, hence the scissor tackle.
    I’m telling you now, if that was Shelvey, Mitro or any other player that’s a straight red. He is the golden boy at the moment.
    Furious really as Lejuene had looked really impressive. Gayle was on his knees briefly too, don’t think his hammy is right now.

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  30. Aussie I did link this thread to the old thread. There are no new comments on the old thread, which is the main featured article on the homepage. So I still dont know why it is so quiet here today.

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  31. We are gona get battered this half. Just hoping Alli gets frustrated and gets sent off. Thats if more of our lads dont go off first.

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  32. He will never learn that Jonjo, total liability, his temper man, petulant prick may well of cost us this game now . All the hard work first half and losing 2 defenders and he does that !

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  33. Alan Shearer‏Verified account
    @alanshearer

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    That is just pathetic Jonjo Shelvey #NEWTOT

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  34. Why do we get so much Drama around us. Wanted a nice pleasant start to the campaign. Gonna be a long old season.

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  35. Last time Shelvey had the Captains arm band, he turned to sh*t too as far as I remember. Please dont give him the arm band again.

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  36. Mark Douglas‏Verified account @MsiDouglas · 2m2 minutes ago

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    Won’t see Shelvey again until September 10.

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  37. Kim I’m fearing relegation again mate. Mike will have us in the championship selling our best players to PL sides.

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  38. Shamrock:
    Last time Shelvey had the Captains arm band, he turned to sh*t too as far as I remember. Please dont give him the arm band again.

    honestly Sham, I would sell him this window, bad attitude and fails to learn.

    Sham have you seen this
    Mark Douglas‏Verified account @MsiDouglas · 4m4 minutes ago

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    Reliable @johncrossmirror reporting approaches for Wilshere and Perez of Arsenal

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  39. Stem:
    Kim I’m fearing relegation again mate.Mike will have us in the championship selling our best players to PL sides.

    I do if we fail to bring in more fire power and creativity.

    tell you what Atsu has been outstanding today like

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  40. Kane hits the woodwork, ha poetic justice for that awful tackle, then he nets but flag up ha ha there is a god 🙄

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  41. Gayle hasn’t been great today. Elliots distribution has been poor. Shelvey well. I really cant knock the defense because of the 2 injurys.

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  42. Atsu was my man of the match today. Really tried and for me, he was outstanding. We really lost our chance to change the game with losing 2 defensive changes. Shelvey.. ? What a prick.. no need. You can see it was deliberate. How could he possibly think he would get away with that. If I though for 1 minute that we could replace him, I’d sell the ****er. A liability. Mind you, I think Kane should’ve had a red too for that scissor tackle.

    What made it worse was the scum winning… ???

    Well Mike, read my letter! You will need to invest now buddy boy!

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  43. Idiot Shelvey. There was always a chance of at least a point before then.

    I thought the defence actually did reasonably well. And Atsu had his moments. But really, it was going to be hard enough with 11 players, almost no hope with 10.

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  44. Guess we’ll see plenty of Merino now. Plain stupid from Shelvey. It’s typical of him too. I wouldn’t mind if it was a last ditch tackle, but oh no, just petulant. Idiot.
    Really we did quite well considering the opposition and losing 2 key defenders. Mbemba did ok and Atsu definitely has an added spring to his play. Merino was very assured. Maybe Shelvey won’t be a loss at all.

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