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When owning Newcastle United, what’s love got to do with it?

Posted on June 30th, 2009 | 40 Comments |

Coloccini, try this mop on for size.
Coloccini, try this mop on for size.
You’ve got to laugh, haven’t you? Or else you’d probably cry and have some sort of emotional breakdown. How much is it to ask for a little normality in our NUFC lives? Why aren’t we only concerning ourselves with potential transfer targets and travel arrangements for pre-season friendlies?

I find it hard to see when we can get back to being what we’re supposed to be. A well-supported club, with fans who have a modicum of decency, humility, self-deprecating humour and expectations at a manageable level. Oh yes, and owners who are capable and care about the club and about us. Or maybe we’ve never had that and I really am deluded but for reasons different to those we’re normally criticised for? Either way, that’s all I’m asking for, honestly.

I’m an only-child so perhaps I’m a little selfish but I don’t think I’m asking for the world.

To be fair I think most of us agree, perhaps not so surprisingly, that the current perception of us as fans is a little wide of the mark and perpetuated by media whores and jealous fans. Though arguably these last two years has sought to senselessly bash much of the humour and decency out of us. The truth though, becomes distorted and all of a sudden we’re all moronic ‘barcodes’, the butt of a thousand jokes and our demise is fully deserved for having ideas above our station. But we know different, don’t we? Our passion sometimes overstated and our loyalty painting us as foolish. We just want the love back. The chance to love our club without these current conditions so that it’s not a constantly strained love and we can enjoy it once again. One in three marriages ends in divorce apparently. It’s testament to the love we have for NUFC that so many are sticking this one out because it’s a turbulent and upsetting situation. No matter how good you are at rolling with the punchlines, after so much incessant laughter, there’s a good chance you’d become hysterical.

The difference between conventional marriage and the marriage between a Newcastle fan and their favourite club is that every so often the relationship is given a boost. New owners, new managers, new players – they all bring a freshness that prevents the relationship going stale. And so we find ourselves in a situation where we could have all of those things.

Will they be the type of people who can help us fall in love with our club again? Can they demonstrate pure intentions and honourable behaviour? It starts at the top and if the new owner can be trusted and is here for the right reasons, he/she/they will surely ensure the rest of the club is similarly inclined. Mind you, it’s argued Mike Ashley had only good intentions for the club and look at the state of us now. So in addition to having honourable reasons to own us, they also need to be competent.

So who is our new knight? Why it’s Sir Leaves-a-lot-to-be-desired, also known as one Freddy Shepherd; Or so the media is telling us. It’s actually hard to imagine a bigger villain really, never mind casting him as a saviour in shining armour. It’s been mooted for weeks and yet we hardly dared contemplate it could be for real and yet there is evidence that some fans are so disenchanted by the current situation, his return would be seen as a positive. I have no doubt he cares about this club and yet his behaviour in the past as chairman has done for any possible reconciliation for me . That particular relationship was soured long ago but it seems time is healing wounds which should remain fresh in the minds of fans who want good things for this club.

I mean who really knows what to believe in the press any more though? Or even what the club tells us? Today was a deadline by which we were led to believe something would be announced. I just want someone in charge that we can warm to and perhaps, just maybe, they can fall in love with this football club. Just like we have and we can look forward, United, to the moment when we can begin to live happily ever after. I’d also love an opportunity to write about something positive and not this perpetual negativity and whining that pervades Newcastle United.

Is that moment tomorrow and what if tomorrow never comes?

NUFCBlog Author: bowburnmag bowburnmag has written 234 articles on this blog.

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40 Responses

  1. got to do got to do with it

    but yeah its like i heard some 1 say you can change youre friends house family and youre car but you cannt change youre club

  2. I wonder if Freddy has a point to prove. He always claims he only ‘lost’ NUFC because he had a collapsed lung (or somesuch) at the time and didn’t have the strength to fight Ashley’s takeover bid, although I don’t quite know how he would have fought it.

    Maybe he’s been bitter about it ever since and that’s why he’s trying so damn hard to get the club back.

    Anyway, let’s assume for one horrific moment that Freddy gets the club. What’s it going to be like?

    Well I’ve been reading he has ‘backers’, so it’s not going to be a one-man show. Maybe they can keep him in line. Nothing much can be done about the sort of person Freddy is but maybe he’ll be stopped from overspending us into debt again; possibly kept on a tight leash.

    Just trying to find a silver lining in a very heavy cloud.

  3. Hey T_F, you can please some of the people all of the time and occasionally you can please all of the people some of the time but you can’t please all the people all the time.

    I could imagine some would find it quite boring to be honest. I’ve rambled quite a bit. But then there’s not a lot else to write about that we haven’t already written.

    I’m not a journalist, so I won’t have ‘exclusives’ that readers/bloggers crave. I’m just writing how I feel on a topical issue.

  4. I give up. I don’t think anyone in the press knows anything and they’re just guessing.

    If the disclosure agreements are as rigorous as we’ve been led to believe the various consortia will be legally obligated to keep their traps shut and the press couldn’t possible know.

    Although I hope The Guardian article is correct and Freddy isn’t the lead contender!

  5. “I could imagine some would find it quite boring to be honest. I’ve rambled quite a bit.”

    Well those are the articles I like. Maybe it’s because I ramble in mine too!

  6. Or maybe I’m just not very interesting!! ;-)

    If MT reads this, spot the song titles…. 8)

    The cool smiley face being ironic of course.

  7. 52times

    ‘Have to say, with the way things are going now I don’t see us being promoted this season.’

    Nor do I. It would be an absolute miracle

  8. T_F – I could never have predicted that response in a million years!

    Reet I’m off to watch Young Frankenstein. Better to laugh at that than our sad club. Wonder what headlines I’ll wake up to?

  9. On a different note I quite seriously would welcome Freddie back, ive got to the point where I really dont care who are owner is. As long as its not Ashley of course.

  10. Toon Factor

    I’ve got to disagree with you there regarding Freddie. I can’t imagine a worse scenarion (than the current status quo of course) the man is a liability imo.

  11. geordie deb

    Right I think we have all established that geordie women are dogs, now its time to move on, a clean slate as they say. BRING BACK FREDDIE!!!!!!!!!!

  12. geordie deb

    Its undeniably true though let’s face it, the majority are anyway. Although my girlfriend (who’s spanish) thought quite the opposite.

  13. TF

    Your spanish girlfriend clearly has good sense. I can’t agree with your comment though. There are undeniably a minority who are a bit dodgey as you would get anywhere, but the majority of geordie women, of which I am one myself, most definitely do not bear any physical resemblance to man’s four legged best friend. Are you from Newcastle?

  14. geordie deb

    Maybe the minority rather than the majority are dogs, but everytime I come back to Newcastle all I seem to see is orange girls with white hair around the town lol think Freddie however must of eaten his words when Cheryl Cole arrived on the scene. And yeah Im from Newcastle but lived in spain most of my life.

  15. Toon_Factor says:
    July 1, 2009 at 12:31 am

    “Maybe the minority rather than the majority are dogs, but everytime I come back to Newcastle all I seem to see is orange girls with white hair around the town”

    LOL Toon. Alot of towns in Britain are like that, but there are quite a few orange lasses in Newcastle, which is quite incongrous bearing in mind how bloody freezing it is up there!

  16. “Maybe the minority rather than the majority are dogs, but everytime I come back to Newcastle all I seem to see is orange girls with white hair around the town”

    LOL Toon. Alot of towns in Britain are like that, but there are quite a few orange lasses in Newcastle, which is quite incongrous bearing in mind how bloody freezing it is up there!

    Yep they’ve all been tangoed, not a good look I’m afraid wherever they live! But a lot of us geordie women are blonde and blue eyed due to our nordic ancestory so should be less need for the white hair look up there.

  17. geordie deb says:
    July 1, 2009 at 1:14 am

    “Yep they’ve all been tangoed, not a good look I’m afraid wherever they live! But a lot of us geordie women are blonde and blue eyed due to our nordic ancestory so should be less need for the white hair look up there.”

    Aye Deb, but I didn’t mean that kind of blonde. I meant that flourescent, “radioactive” kind of blonde.

  18. Worky

    I can picture the colour you’re talking about.. ‘the head in a bucket of peroxide for too long’ look

  19. The Sun and the Star are now reporting “Freddie get out of Toon!”. They’ve taken it from the nufc.com story, “Let’s get Freddy to rumble”.

  20. The Sun and the Star are now reporting “Freddie get out of Toon!”. They’ve taken it from the nufc.com story, “Let’s get Freddy to rumble”.

    Hopefully if the tide was ever in his favour, it is now turning against him, for the sake of our sanity.
    Well I’m off to bed. Night Worky

  21. George Caulkin is very good and consistant in his writing on NUFC.

    I would believe him over that Mackem Louise Taylor.

    I believe it’s imminant anyway

  22. BBM – Interesting article and although there may be some song titles in the prose that I have missed, I think Media Whores and Jealous Fans could be a cracking name for a song.
    Personally I am of the opinion that the owner doesn’t have to love the club or the area. All the owner needs to do is appoint a set of good people who know football to run the club. The fans provide the love. What we need is stability at the club and to provide that we need people who can step back and make those cold, hard decisions. The club needs people at the top to temper the enthusiasm of the manager. You can imagine Shearer getting carried away with spending money if he had the chance as all he wants to do is get the club back up to the PL. You need someone to say, OK Alan, but will spending £35m on Peter Crouch really make sense? Ashley just did what the fans wanted and Shepherd did what he thought the fans wanted. We need someone who wants what is best for the club and if that sometimes means upsetting a few fans then so be it.

  23. MT – didn’t meant to suggest the ability to fall in love with NUFC is a pre-requisite.

    I think it would just be nice. What me being a romantic and all that. And slightly reassuring in as much as it becomes more than a commodity and instead something they are fond of/love.

    I see that as a good thing though I concede caring too much could be just as problematic.

  24. I agree MickyToon I think we need a period of tough but fair love from our new owner. He/She/they need to be able to ignore any knee jerk reactions from the fans as long as they are steering the right course to keep us focused on a bigger strategic goal

  25. BBM, I tend to agree that the new owners must at least show that they give a damn about the club. I think most proper business men do actually care about their investments at least enough to ensure that they get the best possible return on their investment, by appointing the right people to run the business for them.
    I’ve got to admit that if I were a City fan I’d be concerned. I would like someone come in who actually knows something about the club, wants to get involved and hasn’t just bought us of a sheet of recommended buys. Which is probably what happened in City’s case.
    I guess it’s a fine balance between not getting too involved that you become blinkered, like us fans, and also not being too distant like the arabs at city and the yanks at liverpool and ManU.

  26. I think a new owner needs ambition though, albeit considered ambition with one eye on the finances.

    I’d hate a Doug Ellis-style situation where his aim at Villa was to spend just enough to avoid a relegation fight.

    Then again, I’d hate us to run up huge debts trying to compete at the very top. The money has to be paid back eventually.

    I think this club, with the right owner and right manager, can realistically aim for a European place. If Villa and Everton can, we can (although it can’t be rushed – I think it would take us at least 4-5 years to achieve that from here). Beyond that it gets very difficult.

  27. I remember being in sixth grade choir as well as we did your disney medley of songs also it was the most fun I’d in choir. Arabian Nights, Possibly be Our Guest, Make out the Girl, Underneath the Sea would be the ones that come to memory from them. They have to bring some with the movies out of this damn Disney vault.