Behind the scenes of Thursday’s takeover celebrations – One of the best nights of my life

Think about the best moments of your life. Why were they so amazing? Was it something you witnessed? The way you felt? Thursday night was definitely one of them for me on both counts. 

I found myself quite stressed when the news of the takeover broke again, and you’ll have probably gotten the feeling from my pre-takeover blog that I wasn’t confident it would go through. I was terrified of having it fall through again and I didn’t want to engage with it when it was unconfirmed. 

So, all day on Thursday, I tried to ignore news of the takeover. I’d have a quick peek at Twitter when I had a minute away from my desk at home, but that was about it. 

Then just as I logged off work, it broke. I can’t quite describe the feeling of that moment, I think I was light-headed and tingly-fingered.  

I’m lucky that I live in the city centre of Newcastle, so I headed straight up to St. James. As I walked up, I had nervous shakes. It felt like I could have passed out at any minute. 

I’d seen the videos of people singing outside of the Milburn receptions, so that’s where I headed. But as I went up, I noticed people were walking away up to the top of the main car park. It felt like a pilgrimage, and I couldn’t work out why were all heading there. 

I also couldn’t work out if my shakes were getting worse, or if the sheer number of people on top of the car park was making the floor bounce. 

It turned out people were heading up to the Sky Sports van to sing on camera. The atmosphere was already good at this point, so I lurked behind the van and soaked it all in. 

By about 6pm, we were all back down outside the Milburn stand, crowded around the Sir Bobby statue and the surrounding areas. I went up the stairs towards the ticket windows to get a better vantage point. 

At this point, I felt like I was having an out of body experience. None of it felt real. I also realised that being sober at this point felt extra strange, so I duly went to Tesco for some #cans. The shop ran out of them by about 8pm. 

By the time I got back from the 30-second walk, you could barely move. The scenes in the road outside the Sir Bobby statue were unbelievable. It was almost like a mosh pit. I was desperate to join in, but my wobbly legs wouldn’t let me. But I did sing my heart out for hours on end.  

I’ve got a lot of videos from the night, and although the scenes look amazing, they don’t do it justice. The atmosphere was electric. If you’ve been to an away game, you’ll know we can create an amazing atmosphere, but this was 10x better than any away atmosphere I’ve been in. 

True to form, there was new monkey playing at times (only in Newcastle) and people were going nuts to it. Footballs, empty cans and beer were flying everywhere. It was a bit like the scenes in the outdoor bit at the Centre for Life when England scored in the World Cup in 2018, but more genuine. People weren’t just flinging their beer to fling it. It was a by-product of pure joy.

And that’s what the night was about. Pure joy. It’s the best moment we’ve experienced as a fanbase in a long time. It’s something we’ve been waiting 14 years for. By about 9pm, the crowd was still going strong. We’d filled the area down from the Milburn receptions, the stairs were packed all the way up, the opposite side of the road was packed too. We sang, we drank, we laughed. There was a police presence, but I didn’t see a single person get into trouble. We were just there to celebrate.

The crowds started to dissipate at about 9.30-10pm, but there were still hundreds of us there at 11.30pm when the police finally chivvied us away. If they hadn’t, it would have gone on into the early hours.

We’re a resilient fanbase, and we’ve put up with so much in the past 14 years. I’ve seen us leave Old Trafford, the DW Stadium and White Hart Lane in good spirits despite shipping four goals in each.But as I said in my pre-takeover post, even the most hardcore amongst us (including myself) were getting sick.

It’s been well worth the wait, though. The elation I felt and witnessed on Thursday night will live in my memory forever. It was pure, unadulterated joy, and it lit up the fanbase in a way I haven’t seen in years. 

What a night.

47 thoughts on “Behind the scenes of Thursday’s takeover celebrations – One of the best nights of my life

  1. It’s funny in a stupid sort of way. I think we have been linked with 2 DoF or possibly DofSport. I’ve lost count of managers that have been linked. I think I have seen players linked for every position bar three. ASM, Dubravka and Hayden. I might have missed somebody though. I just wonder if our squad are resigned to being sold and replaced. Had to see how they are going to be motivated to fight to save the club

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  2. What are they doing not sacking him???????????

    A bag of potatoes goes green after 2 weeks. Then it gets soft and “Steve Like”.

    They better get onto this now. If you let that fat cnt f@rt around for too long we are relegated.

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  3. Talksport pundits banging on about us being in a relegation battle.

    I know we are 2nd bottom & with Ashley & Bruce I’m sure, no I’m certain it would have resulted in a relegation battle.

    But we are 7 games into the season with something like 60-70 points still up for grabs.

    Could we still go down – yes of course we could.

    But ever if the new manager struggles – will there now be 3 teams worse than us???. That’s not lack of ambition or being negative at all, it’s just considering the worse case.

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  4. My thoughts… Bruce is on 999 games. He will not manage in the premier league again. If he goes, Graham Jones will take over as caretaker for at least 1 match, so how about if the new owners say, ok Bruce, you can have the spurs game to get the 1000 games but Jones will do the actual team selection etc, and let him go out on a special note. In the background Jones will make the decisions as he would anyway if he was caretaker. That way Bruce can hold his head up and so can the owners having done the right and kind thing. One game will not make or break us and we may just win anyway! Just a thought!

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  5. Natasha, I’m glad you enjoyed the celebrations and thanks for telling us about it. Let’s hope this new dawn gives us many more moments of elation like that.

    Really thought Bruce would be gone by now, hope they are not being sentimental about his 1000th game, this is our day on sunday, ours and the owners, not his.

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  6. I am not sure Brendan is the right choice but I would take him in a heartbeat over Bag of Potatoes Heed Steve.

    Antonio, Antonio, where for art Thou Antonio!

    Steves Out!!!

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  7. I’d take Rogers. His teams play good football and he’s achieved wherever he’s been.

    But what is happening with Bruce? They’re really dragging their feet…

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  8. I am surprised that the fans took so much rubbish to SJP. Did they all just decide to take all of the contents of their bins with them? They had pictures of people cleaning up the day after. Made me a little bit sad that I am a NUFC fan and therefore guilty by association with these people.

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  9. Stuart79:
    I’d take Rogers. His teams play good football and he’s achieved wherever he’s been.

    But what is happening with Bruce? They’re really dragging their feet…

    Stuart, mate. I am totally confused as to why Bruce and the Steves are still there. They havent done a good job and they are still allowed to “coach” the players. We have played sh!t football and somehow got lucky. Bruce’s win rate of 29% tells you everything you need to know. He would have been out the door the minute I walked in the door.

    The fans hate him, we have 3 points from 21. What else do you need to know?

    It would be some sort of weird black comedy if they were just keeping him on to turture him. Like a Larry David Curb Your Enthusiam episode.

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  10. All the press reports on managers, players and MD’s is getting a bit farcical now. The Club really need to come out and either stick or twist with Bruce. All the speculation being allowed to go on is a bit of a joke.

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  11. Agreed mate, if every decision is going to have to get Saudi sign off this could all take a while.

    I’m not worried though, I think this is a matter of priorities so early on.

    A working relationship between them, a DOF and manager is key & everything hinges on that DOF – they get the right one in and he has a say on the manager and things work a whole lot better.

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  12. Time for the Steves to go and that includes Harper and Nickson.

    Can we evaluate Nickson? Does an Allen St Maximin make up for a Joelinton?

    There are many failures in his recruiting and it is probably not all down to Brucie.

    Lewis – Fail
    Krafth – Fail
    Hendrick – Fail
    Donkey – Fail
    Wilson – C Minus. We can see there is a player there but he is always injured.
    Fraser – D plus. I think there is a player there as well. Based on facts at NUFC though you would have to give him a low score. Another Fail.

    A success rate if 1 in 7 gets you fired in any other job so fck off Nickson.

    Am I being harsh with Wilson? I dont think so. He played 26 times last PL season and scored 12 times. Sounds good, right? But 5 were penalties.

    Willock? I think he is a really good player but how much credit do you give Nickson for that because a loan is pretty much a free hit.

    So, ALL STEVES MUST LEAVE.

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  13. More on Nickson. If you add up the prices paid for St Max and the Donkey you get about 60 million. Would we get 60 mil for St Max? I doubt it. So we are at best treading water in the Nickson sack stakes with those 2. We would be lucky to get 50 pence for Donkey if you take into account his wages.

    If you look at Nickon’s other signings they have been a total disaster, whether through injury (Wilson), attitude or lack of match fitness(Fraser), or bad scouting – Krafth, Lewis, Hendrick.

    Have they all been Bruced? Or can we say Nickson is just shyte?

    Please leave Steves.

    I keep leaving out Willock but the jury (me 🙂 ) is not in on him either.

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  14. Shamrock:
    All the press reports on managers, players and MD’s is getting a bit farcical now. The Club really need to come out and either stick or twist with Bruce. All the speculation being allowed to go on is a bit of a joke.

    Couldn’t agree more. If for nothing else it’s not exactly treating Bruce with a lot of respect.

    I think they need to back him or sack him.

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  15. Is the other Steve still at NUFC?

    Harper sat on the bench for 10 years. Is that the sort of role model you want for young players? Last I saw he was coaching the young-uns. Nice guy, apparently. But no ambition.

    Every Steve out.

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  16. I think it’s more likely than not that Bruce is in the dug out on Sunday. I would find it rather odd but there you go…

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  17. It seems a long time ago but remember Bruce switched to a back 5 again against Wolves. Will he start Hayden as a centre back again? Who knows, this is getting a bit surreal now.

    You could have the situation on Sunday where all of the fans want the Manager out but then are cheering on the new owners who are actually in charge of that decision. Only at NUFC!

    Who will be in the Director’s box? Will Levy have the balls to show his face.Him and Masters were palling it up at the last Spurs game.

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  18. You know that if Brucie is still around for the press conference all he will say is that it is not his decision on whether he continues and he will do the job to the best of his abilities until AND IF he is no longer wanted.

    And I still dont get how the compensation figure jumped from 4 million to 8 million. It is almost like the press just pull numbers out of thin air 🙂

    The whole thing has been totally confusing, so why would that change now?

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  19. I have seen it said that Bruce supposedly accepted a lower wage on a rolling deal but to make up for it would get an £8m payoff if sacked. That would be such an Ashley thing to do, especially if he knew he was selling, there by leaving the new owners to stump up the cash.

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  20. KIMTOON:
    I have seen it said that Bruce supposedly accepted a lower wage on a rolling deal but to make up for it would get an £8m payoff if sacked. That would be such an Ashley thing to do, especially if he knew he was selling, there by leaving the new owners to stump up the cash.

    KIM i put nothing past that evil man,he gets his kicks from causing crap

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  21. The Sky stats that Olly posted only show what we already knew from watching Bruce’s awful brand of football. I dont think we have the worst squad in the league, I think we have the worst manager in the league. Is it going to take 3 more losses for the Saudis to realise this? The evidence is there. I dont care what his pundit pals say. He has somehow survived and I can only surmise he has done some sort of deal with the Devil for it. The stats show we should have been relegated.

    But, now to Bruce’s appearance. Those Sky pictures are of him after PR retouching. He looks terrible. He looks like an old, ugly man who needs to retire to save his health. Get out of town you fat fck.

    I just fear the Saudis might give him too much time as he will not leave of his own accord. He wants that pay off.

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  22. And… I watched a youtube interview for NUFC TV today with Alan Shearer. He said Bruce is one of the nicest people you will ever meet. Sorry, Al. He has pulled the wool over your eyes along with most of his other pundit pals.

    I have seen his press conferences. He is petty and vindictive. He blames the fans and media for his faults. He even blames Lee Ryder which is like kicking a bunny rabbit.

    Let’s get over this myth that Steve Bruce is a nice guy!!!

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  23. No matter how much I like(d) Shearer as a player and I dont mind him as a pundit, he is still part of this celebrity ex-player banter crowd. Ferdinand, The Dannys, Robbie Savage! Stealing livings on talk sport radio shows and with their newspaper columns. On their little golf junkets and dinner dos. All Pals together and sticking together on the neverending mutual w@nkfest that is the realm of the ex-PL player.

    I really cannot believe how many there are of them. I mean, Tony Cascarino, Gabby Agbonlahor! Who cares what they think? Frank Macilvennie FFS, I had never heard of him before he started yapping about NUFC.

    And dont get me started about Paul Merson’s Giant Balloon Heed. Seems he needs to talk about gambling again. In the name of helping others of course. Is this the billionth time Paul. When will you ever take any responsibility.

    But they all love Brucie. He is a wonderful chap.

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  24. If Steve Bruce is in the dug out on Sunday and we go a goal down the atmosphere in SJP will be toxic.
    Even possible that some of the crowd will question if Amanda Staveley is the right person to be running the club if she isn’t up to the task of replacing the manager.

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  25. I am getting sick of these pundits now and I dont understand why more of us are not angry at them talking utter shyte. They all, to a man, defend Bruce. They should have a look at the Sky stats Olly posted yesterday. We somehow fluked 12th, but that was luck rather than planning. Remember Sheff Utd away? Bruce set up the team to defend against a team that had not won all year. The man is a clown.

    Then there’s them saying we wont attract the best players. We know that FFS. We can improve though with a Manager who knows what he is doing and 3 or 4 additions. You cannot tell me that with what we have plus the likes of Lingard or even Sterling that we would not have a better squad than Brighton or Brentford. The pundits just dont think their answers through when they get on these talk programmes. Or, they are just wanting to have a dig at NUFC.

    What we do know is that the teams that pay their players the most usually finish the highest and FFP has no teeth. City proved that. We can go out tomorrow and have Aramco give us 200 million to be the shirt sponsor. That will buy us a few Jesse Lingards. I think Man U wanted 20 million.

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  26. Sidekick:
    If Steve Bruce is in the dug out on Sunday and we go a goal down the atmosphere in SJP will be toxic.
    Even possible that some of the crowd will question if Amanda Staveley is the right person to be running the club if she isn’t up to the task of replacing the manager.

    I think they will cut Stevely plenty of slack and any anger would be directed at Bruce. We all know that Bruce is the symptom of the disease that was Ashley. Stavely has flushed that disease and has a lot of credit in the bank for that. Hell, some on here have said openly that they would accept relegation if it meant the Fat Man was gone. Stuart has said it and I have seen that sentiment on other blogs.

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  27. Getting back to the specious argument all of these pundits make – that we are not getting top 6 anytime soon. Really? It is possible. West Ham were 6th last year. I would settle for being safe because our fixtures to January are a nightmare. Bruce has squandered our “relatively” easy start. Even Spurs are in disarray despite their points total. They have had lucky 1 nil wins.

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  28. At the very least a good manager would stop all of these muscle injuries. Rafa did. Bruce does not know what he is doing in all aspects of football leadership and this was compounded by Fatty tying his hands behind his back. I would get a new Doctor in.

    I just dont agree that sacking Bruce would not change things like all his pundit pals say (Trev Sinclair today). Our squad are not as bad as they are playing and that is due to Doubtfire.

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  29. Stavely and Co have done a great job so far but it’s apparent they know nothing at all about football. They don’t know what they’re doing and desperately need some football people on board.

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  30. I dont care what the pundits say, Bruce will be gone soon. I would like him gone now but so be it. The Saudis are not going to let this go in the sh!tter. They are in it for sports washing and PR. They want a successful team to have an association with. They will have Aramco sponsor something soon – SJP or the shirt.

    You have to put it in perspective. This is the largest pool of (semi) private investment money in the world. They can bail us out of any situation, even a few mistakes like keeping Bruce for too long. Even relegation. That’s the big picture.

    Yes, I am mad that Bruce was not sacked immediatly and I am mad at his pals defending the indefensible, but the fat cabbage will be gone soon enough.

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  31. I will continue my rant… It was the same with Pards. Remember HIS pundit pals were making fun of NUFC fans as Palace got off to a quick start. Then what happened? He failed as he always does and it turned into exactly the same sh!tshow as he was at NUFC. Then he relegated West Brom and they defended him until the end. This is this pally club of ex-players and they keep getting away with talking rubbish. Even Shearer.

    We all know what Bruce is. A charlatan who blames others for his own failures. A Mr Nice Guy pretender. We know his record at other clubs and we know he lies when he says he never walks away. That is a lie to protect his pay-off. His patter gets very old very quickly but the punditocracy stand by him.

    Has anybody given him any real criticism? Simon Jordan has maybe come closest to saying he is not up for the job, but even he still defends him.

    Bruce’s record stinks. At all of the clubs he was sacked from and at NUFC. I am sick of hearing the excuse that he hasnt had the investment and doesnt have the players. Our squad is better than Norwich, Brighton, Watford, Brentford, Burnley, Palace, Southampton. Maybe even Wolves.

    And still his pundit pals say he hasnt been given the tools. I blame Ashley for a lot. Mainly the lack of ambition. But he has backed Bruce more than any other Manager.

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  32. Bruce showing in his press conference what a petty little man he really is. Calling out the journos for saying he would be sacked and saying their bosses should get involved about the misinformation.

    Let’s get something straight. He WILL BE SACKED. He is a dead man walking. He even admitted HIMSELF last week that he thought he would be sacked.

    This man is a tool and a clown. Please go.

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  33. Bruce tries to say the right things but when he snaps at and belittles people he betrays his true self.

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  34. 3m
    Steve Bruce: “I have tried to keep my dignity. But I hope you guys (journalists) are getting a slap from your bosses, getting a bit of heat.
    “Whoever it was feeding you information, they didn’t get it right.” #nufc

    Just has to have a pop doesn’t he. Just shut up and show a bit of class man .

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  35. KIMTOON:
    3m
    Steve Bruce: “I have tried to keep my dignity. But I hope you guys (journalists) are getting a slap from your bosses, getting a bit of heat.
    “Whoever it was feeding you information, they didn’t get it right.” #nufc

    Just has to have a pop doesn’t he. Just shut up and show a bit of class man .

    Kim – I want Bruce replaced as much as anyone else.

    But I feel like this week over any other he’s entitled to have a pop at a national media, in all its forms – whether it be written, Sky or Talksport radio – ALL of them have ran with the rumours, and still had a pop at us fans on our treatment of Bruce.

    I think it’s too much to say ‘whether you like Bruce or not’ because I don’t think there are many fans that still believe he’s the man for the job – but the handling of his situation has been more in keeping with the Ashley era.

    We all kicked up a stink about the lack of communication for Ashley’s mob – and the new lot have made a right pigs ear of their first week in charge – let’s be honest about it.

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  36. Eric+Sykes:
    Bruce showing in his press conference what a petty little man he really is. Calling out the journos for saying he would be sacked and saying their bosses should get involved about the misinformation.

    Let’s get something straight. He WILL BE SACKED. He is a dead man walking. He even admitted HIMSELF last week that he thought he would be sacked.

    This man is a tool and a clown. Please go.

    Eric – put yourself in his shoes this week mate. It’s a disgrace how he’s been treated.

    The new owners have acted no better than what we’d expect from
    Ashley. Zero communication & left Bruce hung out while the National media speculate about who replaces him.

    Can you imagine being in that position?! – regardless what you might think of the bloke, there should still be dignity & respect and he’s had none this week.

    We wanted better than Ashley & from what I’ve seen this week we certainly haven’t got that yet.

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  37. What seriously concerns me is that they have put all of their efforts in taking over the club & have overlooked the necessity, the absolute urgency to make certain decisions or changes quickly and absolute.

    It’s great PR to stand in front of the camera and stay you want to win the league in the next 5 years and allow the media to run wild with rumours – but we’ve had 14 years of incompetence and what we desperately need from the newbies is professional & decisive act.

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  38. AS has made a statement today saying ‘if we make changes going forward Steve will be the first to know’ – or words to that effect. Which again allows the media to interpret that however they like – ie he’s still likely to be replaced.

    Why not come out and either say ‘we are sticking with Steve and discussing targets for January’ if they are keeping him. If not ‘we intend to replace Steve but are taking time to get the appointment right. In the meantime Steve will remain in post rather than getting an interim manager in and Steve and his team will be fully compensated when the time comes. The working relationship will remain professional & while Steve is with us he will get all of our help & support he needs’.

    Honesty and transparency that fans so desperately lacked under Ashley.

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