North-East reporter reveals the new approach Mike Ashley looks set to adopt this summer – good news?

During a recent piece by the Chronicle on Mike Ashley’s current stance at the club, it was revealed that the NUFC owner could be set to ‘take a step back’ from things this summer – leaving discussions over Benitez’s transfer budget and new contract to Lee Charnley.

Now, whether this could spell good or bad news for Benitez is open for debate, however I would argue the former (even though it may suggest he’s relaxed about all things NUFC; suggesting a takeover is hardly on the horizon).

When it comes to footballing matters though, I’d rather he wasn’t involved. As Rafa has often made reference to in press conferences, Lee Charnley tends to be the man he liaises with – being the middle man between Benitez and Ashley when it comes to the decision making at the club.

With this in mind, there’s a relationship that exists there (unlike Ashley and Benitez who are probably in touch very rarely), so any discussions over a new deal or potential transfer budgets may be more successful and fluent if conducted between the manager and managing director.

Here’s the intriguing line from Lee Ryder piece for the Chronicle on Ashley’s potential approach to  this summer:

“We understand that Ashley may even take a step back in the summer and leave discussions about the transfer budget and a new contract to managing director Lee Charnley.

“Ashley has not appeared at St James’ Park this season and has left the running of the club to Charnley, Keith Bishop and Justin Barnes.”

Charnley’s hardly a man I have a great deal of faith in, with the finger often pointed at him when seemingly imminent signings break down, but anything Ashley is involved in worries me. In that case, leaving the footballing matters to Charnley and Rafa – two men who seem to speak fairly regularly – could be a welcome move.

That being said, it’s key that Ashley doesn’t go AWOL (e.g January when Rafa needed to know his budget) and makes things clear so Benitez, Charnley and the club can move forward in his potential absence.

Benitez is going to be a busy man this summer if he agrees to stay, so it’s absolutely essential that communication is improved, lessons are learned from and he’s armed with the tools to get on with the big task in hand.

What do you make of this folks? Would you welcome the idea of Ashley ‘taking a step back’ from it all this summer or does he need to tackle this all head on to ensure everyone’s on the same page?

(Fancy writing for us? Send any articles/ideas over to us at & we’ll get back to you!)

About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

4 thoughts on “North-East reporter reveals the new approach Mike Ashley looks set to adopt this summer – good news?

  1. A load of nonsensical idiocy. Ashley claims he has nothing to do with the running of the club and leaves everything to the ‘Board’. However, there is of course no Board – unless it consists of Charnley alone which in all reality does seem to be the whole management structure there now (officially that is – as Barnes and Bishop obviously have authority despite not being employees).
    Lee Ryder and The Chron know absolutely sweet FA. They haven’t led with a factual and meaningful story for years now and particularly after Ashley banned them from St James’.


  2. There is no good news here whatsoever. Rubbish story. Only good news would be PCP taking over. Suggestion of Ashley stepping back is ridiculous.


  3. Love it if Ashley were to take a step back, preferably at Marsden Grotto.
    Still think Rafa will walk, he is fully astute of the minds 😥 et of Ashley.


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