A message to Mike Ashley – ‘Gambling is a loser’s game’

By Roy Frankland (Dubai Toon)

I’m not a gambler, (apart from the odd line on the national lottery!), and definitely not a Poker player and this is because, in my view, the gambler very rarely comes out on top. Many tend to want to go just that bit further, they don’t know when to stop, and then they lose everything.

So, what has this got to do with Newcastle United, you may well ask? Here is my thinking…

We all know Mikey is a bit of a gambler, so, what I’m referring to is Mike Ashley, sitting across the poker table from Rafa Benitez, and the stakes on the table, well this is our beloved club, laid bare for the world to see and a managerial contract with Rafa’s name on it. Metaphorically speaking, they are both holding a hand of cards, but the difference as I see it, is that all the cards are in play and are laid down, face up on the table top for all to see. Rafa has laid down a Royal Flush, and Mikey has a pair of 2’s. Is this really a realistic gamble? You would think not, as everyone around the table can see those cards and understand very well that there is only one winner, but Mikey wants to gamble on and take it a stage further – and the whole world can see that he is going to lose, except him it seems.

So, when I say Rafa has a Royal flush, what I mean is this..He is one of the best-known managers in world football and has managed teams in the best leagues and has trophies to prove his worth. League wins, Cups, and even a Champions League win. His reputation is solid gold. If he is available, and even if he isn’t, he is the one that top teams want. A case in point, Spain came calling just days before the World cup, and would have even taken him temporarily just for the tournament, such is his reputation and CV. His hand is rock solid, he can leave and walk into a top job very quickly indeed.

The value of Rafa at NUFC is not so easy to put numbers on, but I would suggest that it must be upwards of 200 million pounds or more. I’m talking here about the cost of relegation, and I think if Rafa decides to walk away, we will be relegated, combined with loss of TV rights, sponsorship, etc. We will lose the few decent players we have and we will not be so lucky as to get out of the championship at the first time of asking, the next time round. (of course, this is just my opinion!)

So, the stakes are super high, even for a man of Ashley’s means, he is gambling with upwards of 200 million and he holds a losing hand, plain for all to see. If he forces Rafa to play his hand of cards, and refuses to put money into the club, Rafa will walk away, be it now, or in one year when his contract expires and there can only be one winner, and one loser. Rafa will likely walk into another top job, holding his head high, his integrity intact, knowing he did all he could, whilst Mike will be left with a club that is worth less than what he paid for it, likely relegated into the championship, if not this coming season, then next, and not even the TV advertising exposure for his tat that he so desires.

To gamble, means you don’t know the outcome and that you have at least some chance of coming out as a winner. In this case, if Mikey doesn’t support his manager, and thus, pushes Rafa to play the game and play his hand, the outcome is there for all to see and Mikey will lose – and he will lose big!

When you can see the outcome so clearly, it is no longer a gamble, it is pushing the self-destruct button.

There are about 2 and a half weeks left and the timer is running …

By Roy Frankland (Dubai Toon)

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.

60 thoughts on “A message to Mike Ashley – ‘Gambling is a loser’s game’

  1. thanks DT,jabba will never change his ways he has 2 billion at least so he will think why should i,the toon is a play thing for him he loves to see people suffer imo he gets great pleasure from itand one way or the other he gets adverts for his cheap and nasty company he will imo never sell the club,if someone did offer 400 mil for it he would put it up to 500mil,i remember years ago when he first got the club in D Wise days he was asked he would like to do with the club he said turn it into a car park,he would be happy to do that if he could,the man is pure evil

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  2. Very well said!! Now we as fans see exactly what you say however with Ashley it is all about ego and authority. He will no doubt soon be interviewed on sky saying all his money is tied up and how much he is losing profit wise with sports direct. It is a planned move to cover himself . Do we really believe sports direct has dropped in profit NO!!! Do we believe he really wants to sell the club NO!!! Does he have any compassion or respect for us fans NO!!! Proof of the later to me is the price of the shirts . Man united shirt was apparently going to be the most expensive but miraculously he has managed to sell this at £54.99 where ours is the dearest at £64.99 how can that be. It’s just a game toying with us he enjoys it but the day will come when the shoe is on the other foot (I hope)!!!!!

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  3. Nice one Dubai, good read and my thoughts exactly mate.
    I’m not sure when we’ll ever be free of that man, he has his chubby fingers on the club like a vice and he is strangling the life out of it.
    With most clubs you can apply pressure on an awful owner and eventually they sell up cause they can’t stand the abuse, loss of revenue or get an offer they can’t refuse. Not so with that man, he loves publicity, any publicity, cause inevitably every time his names in the press SD gets mentioned alongside it and that’s his companies name getting frequent sound bites.
    We need to be big brave fans and be much more proactive imo, take a leaf from Rangers fans and don’t buy the shirt or merchandise, especially this year with it having a 7% above inflation increase!!!. With season tickets rising as well but no new quality signings on show this is the perfect time for fans to vote with their feet. Forget back the team not the regime, the time has come to give him empty stadium so sky will maybe rethink their stance towards him , at the end of the day they want to broadcast full stadiums .
    And anyone rich enough buy some SD shares and then go along to the annual general meeting of shareholders and ask him some hard questions, make his fellow board members start resenting him and their ties to the club through advertising.
    Finally do as Rangers fans did and protest outside his shops or go to the till with piles of stuff, let them ring it up then say you forgot your card or ask if you can have it for £20 less, if it’s good enough for us when bidding for players then…………..

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  4. Lee Ryder‏Verified account @lee_ryder

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    Newcastle United left sweating on Aleksandar Mitrovic deal as Fulham consider other options

    Jesus, they are getting a forward who scores for them for £20m and they are bulking at it ffs
    sell him abroad or loan him out, Rafa isn’t getting the money anyway so ******* to it.

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  5. He’s gambling that’s for sure! The utterly bizarre thing is that Rafa wants investment in areas that will increase the value of his asset instantly and over the medium to long term. The way Ashley runs NUFC it all points towards short term making a buck but then he still owns it. I really don’t understand him at all.

    Mbemba now gone so that’s another £6.5m in the kitty.

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  6. 17 days left and we have a profit of about £13m in the transfer window. If Carlsberg did transfer windows for Jabba…

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  7. Who “follows” these footballers on Instagram? Who really gives a **** about their cars, watches and haircuts. I could care less about what restaurant they went to last night or what they ate. I just don’t get this oversharing and why people are even interested.

    It is not like I am unaware of social media/new tech. I am on a blog, use yelp and tripadvisor. Was a convert to Uber ages ago. I just don’t get the interest in the mundane and why anybody would assume I would be interested in their kid at a waterpark.

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  8. And as for twitter. It seems that there is this subset of sub-humans who crawl out from under their rocks to post on there.

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  9. And can we ignore teamtalk EXCLUSIVES from now on? They are exclusively full of shyte. Wellbeck 🙂 Anatomy of a teamtalk story: Spurious NUFC link to player because he is available, Ryder picks up story, someone realizes he’s on 100k a week, Chronic states story dead when there was no bloody story to begin with.

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  10. Ryder says that Fulham are linked with Willian Jose and goes on to say they have BID 26 million for him. Have they really? Or is it a smokescreen? It wouldn’t be like a football team to put out misinformation to try to influence another deal they are doing. One of the London papers saying Fulham hope to get the Mitro deal done in the next few days. You know, the deal the club, manager and player all want and which has been talked about for months now.

    I believe there IS a deal in place and they are just waiting for Mitro to return from holidays so they can do the medical. However, if it is not done by Wednesday I am not sure what Rafa would do with him. U23s, like MBemba?

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  11. We all know that Charnley cannot walk and chew gum at the same time or pat his head and rub his belly simultaneously. But by the end of this week the main outgoing deals should be done – Moreno, Mitro, Mbemba, Colback, maybe even Sels who looks like he will get his move. Does that mean Charnley can concentrate on bringing players in?

    Who else do we have to shift? Saivet, who will probably be a loan? Darlow? Aarons and Armstrong but who really cares as I am sure they are not on that much money and probably deserve another year anyway.

    I think Joselu will stay as the last 20 minutes hold up option. Hayden? Rafa wants to keep him and is giving him extra time off.

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  12. (since it is quiet) Here’s a theory on Hayden. I am sure he is having family issues but maybe he just wanted a show of faith from Rafa since he was down the pecking order after the new year. I really want Diame to continue his great form but you cannot guarantee it so Hayden should hold his horses. Mo is in the last year of his contract anyway and Fatman will probably be loath to offer a new deal to a 31 year old.

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  13. Nice work DT!
    Always good to see a blogger putting finger to keyboard to knock out an article!

    However your view is pretty much based on what the clueless press are spitting out day after day.
    Sure the signings are thin on the ground but the supposed war between Ashley and Raffa is reaching pantomime levels. Where are the actual quotes from Raffa or Ashley stating that money will be available if Raffa signs on for a longer term? All we have from the press is “it is my understanding” or “sources close to the club” blah blah blah. I think it is a “we are not going to get ripped off” stance more than anything. Such a policy will see no one signed in this market place now days. Which is where we are at… Cash cow premier league clubs need to accept that they will over pay. Many already have but I fear that we have not come to terms with this yet…

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  14. OK, can we all assume that there must be a link between transfer fee and players’ wages? We buy Shelvey for 12 million and Mitro for 14 million and they are thought to be our highest paid players on about 60k a week.

    Now look at Everton. Sigurdsson cost 45 million, Tosun 27 million, Rcharlison 45 million, Schneiderlin 25 million. What must this lot be on? Then they have aging ex-Englanders like a Baines and Jagielka. I just can’t imagine what their wage bill is. Probably approaching Liverpools with nowhere near the revenue.

    I don’t like Ashley’s new maths of counting all of the wages in a transfer spend but you do have to consider it. I don’t think we can fish in that pond and the stakes are very high if you buy a couple of duds.

    So we are sort of reduced to looking at buyout clauses and the odd Rafa diamond in the rough like Dubravka. I can’t really think of any forwards we could afford except Rondon or maybe Lucas Perez. I am sure given a bit of cash Rafa will find someone but I don’t trust the papers to tell us who until he is stepping off the plane at Newcastle airport.

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  15. Pretty funny someone writing an article about Bas Dost saying he didn’t want to see any more articles about Bas Dost. C’mon Man, the Chronicle had one full time reporter devoted to him, you don’t want to see him laid off do you? Think of his children.

    Or we could have Welbeck stories:

    Toon interested in Welbeck
    Could Welbeck be available for15 million
    Is Welbeck a striker or a winger
    Toon to make loan move for Welbeck
    Welbeck on 100k per week, Toon not interested
    Welbeck set for (other club)
    Former Toon target (never was) joins (other club)

    So, what’s that? Seven Chronicle stories from something that was made up anyway. And they are all like this as evidenced by the 4 year Bas Dost crap and Ruben Loftus Cheek mentioned every day for a month.

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  16. Teamtalk EXCLUSIVE: Danny Welbeck wipes his arse with his left hand. C’mon Chris Waugh, you have a DUTY (as you said when saying you don’t do clickbait) to pass this on.

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  17. Daily Mail saying Liverpool want 27 million for Origi. This is a joke. He’s one of these players who flatter to deceive. I think he has over 20 caps for Belgium but God knows how.

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  18. georgio:
    The caps were all before they realised he wasn’t very good. Not for me.

    Georgio – I don’t think he’s good enough for England and he’s not top 6, but I think he’d be a good player for where we are mate.

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  19. This Sociadad player, Willian Jose, that Fulham have supposedly bid for has a buyout clause of 45 million. These clauses used to be put in as a way of deterring other teams from approaching your player. The figure was considered so high as to be stupid money. Now it seems that teams are willing to pay it. This suggests to me that Fulham are using this as a smokescreen and we will see a bid for Mitro soon,

    And I think The Mirror are making the Gayle link up because Fulham were interested last year. Our official media partner would never do that, would they?

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  20. I think the heat must be getting to you lot in the UK. Had a quick look at Ed’s and it is now about 90% bickering and 10% football.

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  21. Even if you assume that Willan Jose’s real price is between Fulham’s SUPPOSED (I don’t believe it) bid of 26 million and the buyout of 45 million, that is still a hell of a lot of money for a promoted team.

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  22. Aussie:
    Nice work DT!
    Always good to see a blogger putting finger to keyboard to knock out an article!

    However your view is pretty much based on what the clueless press are spitting out day after day.
    Sure the signings are thin on the ground but the supposed war between Ashley and Raffa is reaching pantomime levels. Where are the actual quotes from Raffa or Ashley stating that money will be available if Raffa signs on for a longer term?All we have from the press is “it is my understanding” or “sources close to the club” blah blah blah. I think it is a “we are not going to get ripped off” stance more than anything.Such a policy will see no one signed in this market place now days. Which is where we are at…Cash cow premier league clubs need to accept that they will over pay. Many already have but I fear that we have not come to terms with this yet…

    Thanks Aussie, actually, my view is based on the fact that we have not, as yet spent any significant money this window, Rafa has not yet signed a new contract, the transfer window is rapidly running out, and I see this as a gamble of the highest order. I pay very little attention to rumours and scaremongering from the tabloid press…

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  23. We can now rule out a couple of the stupid transfer rumours:

    Ritchie: Stoke have now signed Tom Ince.

    Origi: Liverpool want to sell so that rules out a loan to us. The supposed asking price is 26 million which seems a bit ridiculous. Even at 20 million that would be too much for us.

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  24. IF it is true that Abraham is available for 15 million it would probably be worth a gamble, but one that we wont take. It makes sense because Abraham is a poacher and that’s what we need or we need Gayle to finish off a higher % of his chances.

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  25. kimtoon:
    Sports direct and Keith Bishops agency blocking toon fans left right and centre.

    It depends on if people were being abusive or even just completely negative. The Guardian started moderating my comments after I said on an article they had on Neville Southgate that we now know who ate all the pies. That was about 3 weeks ago and there is still a flag saying I am moderated.

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  26. Harold Bishops PR company have no decided their tweets are protected and can only be seen from confirmed followers. 😀

    Allegedly we can’t afford the lad from Bristol. 😕

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  27. Stu , aye , money in from mbemba and Merino but can’t scrape £6m together 🙄
    Where’s the money Mike ?

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  28. I see some doughnut Labour MP has set up a petition about Ashley to raise it in Parliament.

    First thought – cheap PR stunt to drum up votes.

    Second thought – if they can’t sort a simple thing like Brexit, they’re never gonna get Ashley to splash the bloody cash!!!

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  29. Chi is a Toon fan Sharpy , she was approached by the ifrafagoesigo crew and asked if she’d back them.

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  30. kimtoon:
    Chi is a Toon fan Sharpy , she was approached by the ifrafagoesigo crew and asked if she’d back them.

    Kim – she might well be, but there’s sod all Parliament are gonna do about it!!. I joke about Brexit, but it’s true to say they have far greater issues than our fat **** of an owner being a greedy useless tosspot.
    I doubt Putin could get this arsehead to part with a penny!!.

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  31. Parliament should be doing more to stop **** heads like Jabba buying football clubs with no ambition for the club or investment if their only reason for buying is to enhance their other business interests. They should have a rule that any owner of a football club must be wealthy enough to invest 20% of the clubs turnover a year into the club. They should be forced to do that as a minimum. Football clubs just aren’t like any other business. They’re about the community, the tradition of the area and local economy.

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  32. Stuart79:
    Parliament should be doing more to stop **** heads like Jabba buying football clubs with no ambition for the club or investment if their only reason for buying is to enhance their other business interests. They should have a rule that any owner of a football club must be wealthy enough to invest 20% of the clubs turnover a year into the club. They should be forced to do that as a minimum. Football clubs just aren’t like any other business. They’re about the community, the tradition of the area and local economy.

    Agree, and hopefully what she’s doing will in some way benefit all fans of all clubs with ****e owners. Reality is though there is little she can do, but just naming and shaming is enough for the mo.

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  33. I’m beginning to think that Jabba May well be paying himself some money back from his loan. If he is doing then there’s a possibility he can/will reduce his asking price. He knows it’s not possible long term to take big chunks out but maybe now he can take £50m out, make Rafa wheel and deal and then sell up before January for a few reduced by £50m.

    Here’s hoping…

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  34. Stuart79:
    Looks like we’re
    stuck with Mitro then.

    Wouldn’t Shurrle be supplying the crosses? There is no way they keep Sausegnon for much longer either.

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  35. In a logical World reducing the debt to Ashley using club generated funds would also reduce the asking price. I bet it doesn’t though.

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  36. Yep, Schurrle a number 10 or winger so would probably make the Mitro deal more likely. Willian Jose with a 45 million buyout looks like a made up story.

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  37. And what happens Wednesday? The lads have a day off except Mitro who is due back after the WC. It should be interesting IF he turns up. Then what does he do, sign in and go to the weight room? Meet one on one with Rafa? The timing is sort of surreal IF he turns up. Or maybe Rafa would take the day off? Doubt it, he will be working the phones for loans.

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