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A Little Hope Is All We Wanted

Newcastle fans have always been an easy target, and for a club who we are repeatedly told are 'not a big club' (whatever that means) we get more than our share of critique. Finally the dream of new ownership may well soon become a reality, after thirteen painful years, it's time to say to these hypocrites; Where have you been for the last thirteen years? Where was your outrage at Ashley? Where were your tweets, posts and articles then, huh?

In the last few days as I've trawled the usual sites looking for NUFC content. I’ve seen more so called journalists, random twitter accounts, youtubers, social media influencers and 'has been' ex professional players have a pop at our potential new ownership structure, than I ever saw aimed at Mike Ashley during his hellacious dictatorship on Tyneside. Considering this is solely a football issue, why generate the noise now, when for thirteen years many of the current critics have stayed as quiet as Lee Charnley at a Fans Forum meeting?

It's 'heads gone' territory, that many people have let Mike Ashley off, or painted him as a good guy saviour. Now they suddenly feel it’s a football fans job to carry the moral conscience of the world; Hows everybody doing at Sheffield United, Chelski or Manchester City, and hows the World Cup in Qatar developing? Should politics and sport cross or is it just when Newcastle are involved? Can things be changed from the inside? All big questions. Was it not Ashley himself, and his stooges, who said that we are just customers at the end of the day? Which way are we having it then?

So here is just a few things that Mike Ashley has done to OUR football club which helped alienate him from us fans. It goes some way to showing why we are happy at him potentially leaving for someone who can give us our hope back, and that's all we want, HOPE. Not a sense of deserving Champions League glory or anything like the grandeur the some sections of the media believe we're entitled to, just HOPE. It's about a connection and living the dream like every fan at Bramall Lane will be feeling this season!

Let's start at our stadium. As Spurs go about a huge naming rights deal for £250 million, the name change of St James’ Park to ‘The Sports Direct Arena’ without a penny payment to further push his tat shop corporate agenda was disgusting. In addition to the Sports Direct signage over every square inch of SJP, whilst keeping in mind he’s never paid a fair price for that either, Where was the outrage then? No, it was let's all laugh at Newcastle. "It's his club!" was said repeatedly, with no mention that he was just a custodian. The building is iconic, and he was moronic to do this, as it showcased nothing but a ruthless dictator who didn't even consult with anyone but his Sports Direct bottom line.

Speaking about bottom line. Giving control of the club shop to Sports Direct; a wolf in sheep's clothing, as you wouldn't know it unless you scratched the surface, and he has done this all over Newcastle and its business practices. For years Ashley and Bishop has said “The club can have every penny it generates.” However he has stunted the clubs revenues at every junction, allowing clubs who historically were behind us, to overtake us. Yet, we hear “fans should be grateful” that we get every penny, while never bringing up these factors that hinder us. Oh, and where did all the stock NUFC needed come from? Oh yes, tied to paying his tat shop for that too! Corporate greed and dodgy business dealings, I ask again, Where was the outcry in the media then?

Lack of investment in facilities and net spend . How our ground has allowed to become so poor is criminal, bar the recent '60 Minute Makeover' paint job in one corner. In the pre Ashley years, St James Park was a beacon of hope and ambition, (I love them two words.) Look at how proud Sir Bobby was was of the training ground and stadium, as he guided Gary Lineker around. All undone by one man's lack of ambition, poor choices, greed and investment choices. Then the "He spent his own money!" jibe. Another myth! He had run it as a self sufficient entity, slowly paying himself back for any cash flow needed due to his daft initial decisions. Any money spent, was spent thanks to the club, not him, and his false promise to invest £20 million out of his own back pocket each year must have been spent on wallpaper I guess?

From challenging for titles with Kevin Keegan, and playing Champions League with Sir Bobby Robson, to being overtook by Manchester City, Spurs, Wolves, Burnley, Bournemouth etc etc, and being told we can’t and won’t compete. Not forgetting Ashley's own words that "cups aren't a priority." Who else openly states this? From being able to beat Barcelona, and play in cup finals, to relegation and cup exit, after cup exit in pitiful showings should never have been accepted. Contrary to what is said and believed by many we don't demand to win, but we want to try where Ashley just wants to exist. What was said in the media? Very little.

Appointments like Dennis Wise, and Jo Kinnear twice! Listening to Jiminez over Keegan; Ashley has constantly gave the wrong people decision making power, then wondered why it goes so wrong, but has refused to change. Not listening to Rafa, a serial winner, is up there with one of his biggest mistakes the club. He listens to no one, not even their own fans. Sorry customers, as it's a dictatorship, but again nothing is mentioned about this? Little is said about the fact he wouldn't have had Rafa, unless Rafa approached us! Selective reporting?

Selling players from under manager's noses and breaking promises repeatedly. Proven to have lied and mislead the loyal fanbase in court. That famous end of season PR speech? Questionable agent deals, false promises, the most expensive replica shirts in the country coupled with Season Ticket price rising, despite admitting to not competing. Using Rafa to sell Season Tickets knowing he’d be going, never sticking to fans forum meetings dates and not engaging with the fans as they should. The list seems endless! All behaviour and decisions we expect from Ashley but nothing ever covered by anyone else?

Let's look at the first relegation and the treatment of good men in Alan Shearer and Chris Hughton and the shenanigans over the player's bonuses. Followed up by failing to improve the squad after an amazing fifth place finish and subsequently regressing into a second relegation. Ashley's treatment was never mentioned nationally which is odd given their willingness to now talk at length about Saudi money? It's not only the treatment of players, but the treatment of Newcastle legends like Kevin Keegan should be enough to have the backing of journalists countrywide, but no! Arguably our greatest ever manager isn’t even welcome at St James Park, yet it was Ashley proven a liar in court and he does as he wants. It’s downright disgusting and sums up Ashley. Then there is the release of Ryan Taylor and in particular, Jonas Gutierrez over the phone, that is arguably the worst thing Ashley and his toxic regime has been part of. "Spiderman" scored a massive goal for us against West Ham to save our bacon, gave 110% with his personal circumstances, and so was entitled to more respect than anyone in the hierarchy of the club gave him and then got terminated by phone. Classless.

Furloughing staff recently after bidding £40 million for a midfielder is terrible when it's designed to keep people in jobs at struggling companies, this is morally corrupt but nothing’s said about it at Newcastle, despite the fact we did it first. Liverpool and Spurs got pelters for it and reversed the decision, Bournemouth followed too, but not Newcastle United. Nobody is saying anything to this wallpaper billionaire, but playing hell over potential Saudi money, money of course Cashley is happy to take as it props up his struggling business empire and its shady practices around the world - as known as fact - he's even been ordered to speak to the government.

So if you think Newcastle United fans shouldn’t be happy about a change of ownership, ask yourself why? He’s nearly killed this club from the inside out and didn't bat an eyelid. It is not our responsibility to be footballs moral compass, and little was said when other clubs were taken over by groups from the same region, so why us? We aren't a big club we're told religiously.

A few have defended us to offer some balance, but MANY have not. To those who have not, I think why should I listen to you lot now on your high horse?

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