No players in, no players out and no manager and an awful away kit . If Newcastle united should have learnt one thing from their demise into the second tier of English football, it should have been to get their house in order
As soon as the whistle blew on that fateful day at Villa park, Newcastle and Mike Ashley should have planned for an immediate return to the top flight. Alan shearer should have got the job on the Monday, with the clear backing of Mike Ashley. These two men along with Derek Llambias should have sat down and planned for the future and put a 3-4 year plan in place to make sure Newcastle united were on a stable footing both on and off the pitch.
Nearly 2 months after the Geordie eyes had dried, the Newcastle faithful are no closer to knowing where the club is going, and are no idea who will be in charge of the club, of the team, and who will be in charge on the pitch for the opening game against West Brom. In the Championship you need to get off to a flying start, get your points on the board and the rest will follow, as proved by Wolves this year who went 2 months without winning a game yet still won the league at a canter. You cannot expect to get off to a flier if your club is in disarray. The only thing Mike Ashley has done since the relegation is put the club up for sale at a “discounted” £100 million, and throw into more turmoil. The problem he has is that nobody will touch the club. Anyone who comes in with the cash will immediately have to clear the debts and clear the “dead” players, because at £70 million a year, that is a ludicrously high wage bill for a mid table premiership team let alone a championship team.
That leads you onto the players. Earning so much money, driving their sports cars, living in their 6 bedroom palaces and claim to love the club. If they were asked to defer their wages to save the club, not many would, buts that loyalty in football these days. Newcastle have a history of buying overly expensive foreigners. For too long Newcastle united has become a nice little pay packet for many a player. Safe in the knowledge that if they do well for Newcastle a bigger and better club will turn up and Newcastle will “always be in their heart”. Alan Shearer knows this is the problem, he knows that if a Premiership club made a bid, or showed interest in players like, Jonas, Coloccini, Martins or Bassong, then they would demand to leave. But if Alan shearer is not in charge how can a decision be made on the future. What about the players like Damien duff and habib beye who have said they will stay and fight for the club, i don’t see them banging on the door asking for a reduction of wages because they have performed so dismally. If they were challenging top 4 and these players were playing well, you can guarantee they would be asking for pay rise.
As it stands, Newcastle united need to get rid of up to 12 players at least. A complete overhaul. If there is no manger how can this happen. They are currently 6 weeks behind the rest of the championship clubs in terms of planning for next year. The longer mike Ashley leaves the club in limbo the harder it will be for players to come and go. Alan Shearer would have a list of names he wants to keep, and list of players he feels could do well for him. Again, if Ashley keeps dithering then some of these players may go to other rival clubs and Newcastle’s position will worsen. Newcastle need passionate players who will give their all for the club, more importantly they need players who are interested in playing for the club rather than being paid by the club.
Mike Ashley needs to take a back seat. Hire Alan shearer, and simply wait and bide his time. If a buyer turns up half way through the season sell up, but at the minute not many will touch it. He needs to sort the club out, because if he doesn’t hire a manger who can buy and sell his own players soon he will find the club in a lot more trouble. They are currently favourites to make an immediate return to the premier league but you would have to question why that is. There appears to be no structure and more alarmingly, there seems to be no rush to get a structure in place.
So just over 1 month to the start of the championship and with no manager, no transfer activity, no player recruitment and very little news from St.James park Newcastle United will be lucky to attain a play-off birth next year. If Ashley continues to (and he maybe unaware of his flaws) deconstruct the club then come may next year and Newcastle united could be looking at another relegation, and if that is the case, you’d have to say that they would have few to blame but themselves.
Article written by John Flanagan