Amanda Staveley’s moment of class after NUFC’s caring custodians made history happen at SJP

When the new owners walked into NUFC back last October they promised the Club would be looked at from the bottom up and inside out. They vowed to make the whole Club and nothing but The Club better and take everything forward.

In comes Eddie Howe, his staff, Trippier, Burn, Targett, Wood and Guimaraes and suddenly we’re transformed from a Club going nowhere – unless the Championship is somewhere – to one that is suddenly on the cusp of finishing in the top half of the Premier League.

But there’s more – 22,134 more to be precise.

Perhaps just as importantly and significantly is the revolution of the Lady Mags, Wor NUFC Lasses. They were already going well in their League but still needed a boost. In walk Mehrdad and Amanda, and boy did they get their boost and then some.

First off they had a big FAW Cup Tie against Ipswich Town to play. An Ipswich side top of the division above our lasses. The game was switched to Kingston Park. It was marketed and promoted and The Lasses were given identical kit parity to the Men’s senior side. It drew a crowd of 2,700 and the die was cast.

The game was lost but only 1 – 0 and the Lasses showed heart, grit and no little style in front of the watching Mehrdad; who came down on to the pitch at full-time to congratulate them for their efforts and assure them of their future within the structure.

A league game at Coach Park Campus against Leeds – hardly the most glamorous of venues – saw Amanda join her husband in watching the Lasses who produced a fine home win. Honestly, new owners at a fourth tier Women’s League game at Coach Park Campus. Hard to make up.

And then last Sunday happened; the main event and a day I was lucky enough to witness from the press box.

True to their word, the owners helped to get the Lasses the opportunity to grace the hallowed turf of St. James.’ The wonderful Toon Army, perhaps quite a few new recruits as well, responded and 22,134 saw The Lasses beat Alnwick Town Ladies 4 – 0.

Not only were the owners present, but they also came down pitch side after the game to congratulate everyone. I even got a handshake of Mehrdad and a smile off Amanda. Their infectious enthusiasm and commitment to Wor Lasses was clear to see. They absolutely loved it.

We even had the sight of Amanda in her heels nutmegging her own son on the pitch as The Lasses and everyone connected with the team celebrated a magnificent and very emotional day. Conversations took place with the hierarchy of the Lasses team.

It was made clear that whilst it was the first time they’d graced St. James’ Park it certainly won’t be the last. It was also made clear that they would get the backing and finances they need to take the team forward. Becky Langley will be given those resources and is asked to continue the progress.

Everyone, absolutely everyone I spoke to has nothing but praise and admiration for the way the new owners have embraced the Lasses. It all adds to the feel-good factor and proves that this whole Club is on the launch pad to success with people backing it that get it and genuinely care.

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