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Barry Moat tried to persuade Richard Harpin to invest in Toon.

Posted on October 26th, 2009 | 164 Comments |

Said no to Moat
Said no to Moat
Would-be Newcastle United owner Barry Moat tried to persuade Richard Harpin to invest in his bid to buy the club.

Richard Harpin is the head of HomeServe and has a personal fortune of more than £200m, which places him as one of the top 5 richest North-Easterners according to the Sunday Times Rich List.

Harpin was born in Huddersfield but moved to Stocksfield in Northumberland with his family when he was young and then went to the Royal Grammar School in Jesmond.

I regard myself as an adopted Geordie,” says Harpin.

He launched his first enterprise – a mail-order fishing tackle business – at 15 with just £200 and by the time he was 22 it had a turnover of £45,000 on a gross margin of 40%. He had actually started five businesses by the time he was 20 in industries as diverse as Christmas trees, jewellery and magazines before going to work as a brand manager at Proctor & Gamble.

His ‘big break’ came when he partnered with South Staffordshire Water to set up a plumbing insurance cover business and it was after expanding this business to cover all utilities that HomeServe was born.

Anyway, to get to the point of this article …

Harpin was recently revisiting his old grammar school in Jesmond and was asked whether he would buy Newcastle United. He claimed that, whilst he’s not poor with his £200m, it takes a billionaire to fund a football club these days.

He does however say he was a approached by Barry Moat about investing in Moat’s bid to take over the Toon but said “It took me about 60 seconds to say no.”

It’s a shame he didn’t reveal any details about why he wasn’t interested in Moat’s bid.

If you’re wondering about the point of this article, you’re not alone – so am I and I wrote it. I just found a thread, pulled at it and got nowhere. Seemed a shame to waste all the electrons though.

NUFCBlog Author: Hugh de Payen I'm a baby-boomer of the punk rock persuasion, currently exiled in Somerset for crimes committed in a previous life where locals keep trying to poison me with something called 'scrumpy'. Hates sprouts, coat-hangers, Cilla Black, ornaments, Steven Seagull movies and 50 Cent (he's not worth 10). Hugh de Payen has written 634 articles on this blog.

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164 Responses

  1. Well I would assume he realises that £200m is just nowhere near enough to buy a football club.

    Well it is if you buy it and run it like Ashley I suppose….

  2. Maybe Mike Ashley considers himself an ‘adopted Geordie’ now, so perhaps it’s him!

    i doubt it are there any billionaires from the north east? if anybody knows

  3. A few months ago Worky showed a league table with the richest Geordies on there. I’m sure he will dig it out again

  4. Seems like you were Harpin on about nowt much really Hugh? ;)

    Of course, given my lack of articles, compared to your production line efforts, I should just be quiet, even in jest.

  5. It wasn’t my best article was it? It started nowhere, hung around nowhere in the middle and ended up nowhere else.

    Incidentally BBM, the monkey wants its bottom back if you’ve finished using it as a face.

    Sorry, I thought it was today’s form to finish all comments with an insulting remark. :-)

  6. “It took me about 60 seconds to say no.”

    Shame he didn’t say why? Just to leave it hanging implies all sorts of stuff from: Not enough cash to Moat’s bid has NO credibility.

    Still no word, officially, on Moats bid…..has it gone the way of Monty Python’s Parrot?

    “HHHEEELLLOOOOO BBBAAARRRYYYY! No, he’s not answering!”

    “He’s probably stunned, stuns easily Barry Moat does!”

  7. Ha ha, pick on Bowburn Mag day.

    I thought Sage had gone under. I guess not.

    Perhaps Sir John Hall would be interested in buying back his shares at a discounted rate. :-)
    As for rich Geordies, surely Shearer is getting to the top of the list. :)

  8. Hugh, I thought it was intriguing!
    Would love to know why he gave it such a resounding no.
    Why did Moat need investment from him? What about Moat’s so called American backers? Think they’re called Michael and Donald and live in a fantasy world in Orlando owned by Walt somebody, he needs to go and join them.

  9. geordie deb says:
    October 26, 2009 at 11:58 am
    Hugh, I thought it was intriguing!
    Would love to know why he gave it such a resounding no.
    Why did Moat need investment from him? What about Moat’s so called American backers? Think they’re called Michael and Donald and live in a fantasy world in Orlando owned by Walt somebody, he needs to go and join them.

    Moat has to raise the funds himself to buy the club, before his American backers will get involved.

    They aren’t fans of Ashley and don’t want to give him any money. Strange but true.

  10. geordie deb says:
    October 26, 2009 at 12:28 pm
    Stuart I know that’s what the media peddle but how true do we think it is?

    I was told by someone in the media and they were adamant that they believed what they had been told.

    That’s the reason it’s been a struggle for him. The frustrating thing is that these American guys are supposed to be seriously wealthy.

  11. stardust reveals it took him less than 60 seconds to say ‘ no ‘ to barry moats approach to join his take over bid. However stardust had the decency to explain why. He states he would never betray his great friend mike ashley, as he had remained loyal throughout. He went on to state ashley is a good man and supplies him with free david icke purple shell suits. Quote ‘ mike has supplied all our cult with purple shell suits with the david icke logo on the chest. Mike being the leader has promised me his white shirt when he steps down. Within our cult, not even the great david icke earned that accolade despite his appearance on wogan. I take that as a great honour and will never betray such an honest man like mike’.
    It was later reported that stardust was seen at the top of the town moor at midnight, in company with ashley, wise and lambias dancing around a fire.
    A reliable source within the club stated malcolm macdonald was sacraficed for his recent comments about their regime. Real radio refused to comment and it our understanding a police investigation has commenced.

  12. Stuart,
    maybe moat should ask Shearer for a financial input?
    Surely that would be a good move for all concerned.
    Or maybe it’s all hog-wash & all the Geordies
    aren’t that interested in putting their money where their mouths are. Where ever that may be at this moment in time.

  13. Clint @ 16

    No thats a really silly idea – it isnt in Shearers demands – he insists on spending other peoples money – why would he risk his own – he is unproven after all lol

  14. Stardust.
    Hey, just wild shot from left-field there from me. :)
    You’d think there’d be several ‘made’ Geordies out there with enough disposable income & a love of NUFC that’d have gotten in touch with Baz & a few of the said ‘presumed Geordies’ by now & gotten a proper ‘Geordie Consortium’
    together, wouldn’t you?
    Even if it was just to get Baz past the winning post.
    Maybe they have, & just don’t like the scene?

  15. Clint – as you probably know I have likened NUFC fans to the Mob in Rome – with their teeth drooling for the next kill in the gladiatorial arena. Well our fans just demand trophy signing after trophy signing without the consequence of the cost in mind.

    Because of the way football is – only very few clubs per year get plaudits – the rest are vilified by their fans. So if success doesnt arrive more demands for more signings are made and the circle continues.

    Successful people dont need these unrealistic people in their lives – they are happy and comfortable.

    A Question to the Mob – Have you actions over the last few years encouraged investment or discouraged it?

  16. Stardust says: “Well our fans just demand trophy signing after trophy signing without the consequence of the cost in mind.”

    Most unfair and a huge, inaccurate generalisation. I would like to bet that ‘most fans’ realise the benefits of financial prudence, good scouting, lower wage bills and building for the future.

  17. Rather than dignify your post 19 with a thoughtful repsonse, I’ll just say you’re a very strange man Stardust.

  18. Well Lads and Lasses, I’ve just found the blog. No ads getting in the way.
    A lot of the comments are from those who used to post on the .com blog and have moved over. So I guess it’s goodbye to Ed from me.

  19. Welcome aboard Robbo.

    Hugh “I would like to bet that ‘most fans’ realise the benefits of financial prudence, good scouting, lower wage bills and building for the future.”

    Thats why they hated Ashley in the first place!

  20. No Stardust, I disagree.

    I will grant you that a lot of fans didn’t perhaps realise how much debt FFS was building up and I will grant you that most fans probably dislike Ashley, but that’s because of the way he’s gone about things.

    I’d bet most fans approve, at least in principal, of Ashley’s idea to build something like an Arsenal model at the club based on sensible spending instead of the Owens and Vidukas of old.

  21. Stardust – howay, long and short of it…..

    Initial scepticism = lack of trust (understandable no?)
    Poor communication = mistrust
    Changing policies to mistrusted European blueprint = mistrust
    Bad decisions = rrarrrrgghhh
    More poor communication = more mistrust and disharmony
    More poor communication and some other bits and bobs = where we are now.

    I could of course be simplifying things, and you will no doubt tell me I am.

    Just stop making out other fans are stupid and that they hate the club. For the love of fck.

  22. Hugh – thats absolute tosh! The hate was built up pre KKs walkout when they called him a profiteer and asset stripper! Where do you think “only in it to make money” came from?

    I had a thousand arguments with the likes of the Slug about to wait until January for the accounts etc.

    Some realised our perilous position – the majority however ignored it completely – that was the whole part of my campaign for Ashley and the majority pilloried me for it.

    If you suggest anything else you are disingenuous and you try reshape events suit todays argument.

    Absolute rubbish Hugh – either you are mistaken or its poor poor form.

  23. Clint – as you probably know I have likened NUFC fans to the Mob in Rome – with their teeth drooling for the next kill in the gladiatorial arena. Well our fans just demand trophy signing after trophy signing without the consequence of the cost in mind.

    stardust we dont demand trophy signings in fact i think you will find that a lot of the toon fan base was quite happy for mike ashley to cut costs on overpaid primadonnas and start investing in youth instead that would become top class players personally i was quite excited at the fact that dw would search the globe for top up and coming stars on the cheap but as we know that didnt happen (although we have some good kids in the academy)the problem is you still need to buy good players and good pleyers usually come at a hefty price tag

    A Question to the Mob – Have you actions over the last few years encouraged investment or discouraged it?

    i would say the mob as you would say have encouraged investment because of the high attendances

  24. Stardust, I stand by what I said, despite your ad hom response. Accusing me of ‘poor form’ and being ‘disingenuous’ won’t change what I believe, although a good argument might.

  25. Beye – you could not have said that about attendances before the season started. Hindsight is easy – only 25k season tickets were taken.

    The only indicator investment groups had was how many season tickets HAD sold. Your argument is flawed – they were down by 50%.

  26. Stardust.
    ‘Because of the way football is – only very few clubs per year get plaudits – the rest are vilified by their fans. So if success doesnt arrive more demands for more signings are made and the circle continues’.
    That’s about right.
    & yea, a lot of our fans do want trophy singings.
    They’re not happy at the end of transfer windows if we haven’t singed a couple. Some want messiahs, ‘big-stars’ to follow. & when it goes wrong they get on their back at games & blogs alike. Therefore, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy type situation.
    Obviously, i’m not saying ALL fans. But the ones that do indulge are most vociferous & poisonous/contagious.

  27. Well is thats the case Hugh we cant debate – youve changed history to suit your cause.

    Thats not a debate at all.

  28. The only indicator investment groups had was how many season tickets HAD sold. Your argument is flawed – they were down by

    well you said last few years so im not just talkin about this year i am talking about the last 2 or 3 but also i agree they might have been put off by the lack of uptake in season tickets but they wouldnt just be looking at the ticket sales for this season they would also be looking at potential ticket sales for the future and i imagine the 40 k plus attendances for the ccc would also be an insentive despite alot of that not coming from season tickets

  29. Stardust, re-read what I said and tell me where I’ve changed history?

    I said:

    1 – I would like to bet that ‘most fans’ realise the benefits of financial prudence, good scouting, lower wage bills and building for the future.

    2 – a lot of fans didn’t perhaps realise how much debt FFS was building up

    3 – I will grant you that most fans probably dislike Ashley, but that’s because of the way he’s gone about things.

    4 – I’d bet most fans approve, at least in principal, of Ashley’s idea to build something like an Arsenal model at the club based on sensible spending instead of the Owens and Vidukas of old.

    Most of those statements are ‘current’ and worded in the present tense. The only one that could be deemed ‘historical’ is number 2 and I can’t see how I’ve changed history with that one.

  30. Stardust – Mike Ashley came in and effectively bought cheap/drafted in youngsters and sold well. Then replaced them with freebies and loanees. You can surely see why people have a problem with exactly what his intentions were and what he intended to ‘invest’? Some of it may be circumstantial but that could just as easily be a convenience.

  31. “You can surely see why people have a problem with exactly what is intentions were and what he intended to ‘invest’?”

    BBM – the point is it shouldnt matter if a player is free or loaned or whatever. why do fans have to see huge sums of money going out to be happy?

    Id happily take 10 free signings if they were good quality.

  32. Wasn’t one of the things fans didn’t like about ma, not spending big on trophy signings?
    Anyhoo,
    why no Geordie consortium Re: my post 18?
    Could it be that we can’t work together for the common good? What a revelation.

  33. Hugh – “1 – I would like to bet that ‘most fans’ realise the benefits of financial prudence, good scouting, lower wage bills and building for the future.”

    They didnt see the benefit Hugh – they chose to hate – what do you think I spent a year defending him for? The slug et al were after him from the start – he was hated by “most” and KK sealed his fate.

    If you had said some saw the benefits – it would have been right – “most” is a gross misrepresentation. Everywhere way before KK left was full of “he is a moneygrabber, asset stripping cockney” I spent hours in bars telling people they were wrong.

    That is the history to which I refer. And if the foundation of your argument is not there – the argument does not exist at all.

  34. Stardust “BBM – the point is it shouldnt matter if a player is free or loaned or whatever. why do fans have to see huge sums of money going out to be happy?”

    Gonna have to disagree with that too. At least partly. I think it matters whether a player is *loaned* or not as loaning players represents a short-term solution which is hardly in keeping with ‘building for the future’.

    I can understand why we’re loaning players now but that’s because we’re seeking short-term solutions.

  35. bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 2:02 pm

    Stardust – Mike Ashley came in and effectively bought cheap/drafted in youngsters and sold well. Then replaced them with freebies and loanees.

    Bowburn, that simply isn’t true and you know that it isn’t.

    Jonas Gutierrez, Fabricio Coloccini, Xisco, Nolan, Danny Guthrie, plus he had to pick up the tab for alot of Allardyce’s dodgy transfers. He also ended up having to pay for Michael Owen out of sponsorship money.

  36. I do agree with Stardust to a certain extent

    I think what Mike Ashley tried to do was in the best interest of the club, but due to what happened in the aftermath of Keegan walking it started a chain reaction and we ended up due to been relegated over it.

    Im not going to put the blame on anyone , but somehow the club ( IF NOT SOLD ) and the fans need to put it behind us and move on

  37. Hugh – Why dont you see that at 43 the club was in that much of a financial mess that short term measures were needed then too?

  38. “BBM – the point is it shouldnt matter if a player is free or loaned or whatever. why do fans have to see huge sums of money going out to be happy?

    Id happily take 10 free signings if they were good quality.”

    Ah ba***rds!!! Hugh got there first!!

    Basically that would be lush Stardust if the freebies and loan both appeared and proved to be astute but we know that’s not true??

    They represent the temporaray and slipshod nature of this current arrangement?

  39. 45 – Johno – perfectly put – we all need to move on and lose the hatred for each other before the club can be a success again.

  40. bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    “I’ll just say you’re a very strange man Stardust.”

    At least he has the capacity to think for himself, Bowburn.

  41. Stardust: “They didnt see the benefit Hugh – they chose to hate – what do you think I spent a year defending him for?”

    Irrelevant to what I’m saying, as is most of your post. I am not saying anything about what fans *did* (past tense) or *did not* (past tense) see, except point 2.

    I am talking about what they think *now* (present tense), which is far more relevant IMHO.

    You’ve got the wrong end of the stick. Or possibly even the wrong stick entirely.

    Anyway, I have to go out, so you’ll have to wait until later to gasp in awe at my wisdom again.

  42. To suggest that was ma’s plan Re: loanees etc all along is silly.
    Like Johno said, ‘chain of events’ changed any game plan.
    Relagation, court case, club up for sale.

  43. workyticket says:
    October 26, 2009 at 2:16 pm
    bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    “I’ll just say you’re a very strange man Stardust.”

    At least he has the capacity to think for himself, Bowburn.
    <<<<< but he dusent because i have to tell him what to say

  44. Hugh “I am talking about what they think *now* (present tense), which is far more relevant IMHO.”

    AGAIN you change circumstance to try and win your debate – look at the tense of your posts

    “Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 1:31 pm
    Welcome aboard Robbo.

    Hugh “I would like to bet that ‘most fans’ realise the benefits of financial prudence, good scouting, lower wage bills and building for the future.”

    Thats why they hated Ashley in the first place!

    26
    Hugh de Payen says:
    October 26, 2009 at 1:36 pm
    No Stardust, I disagree.

    I will grant you that a lot of fans didn’t perhaps realise how much debt FFS was building up and I will grant you that most fans probably dislike Ashley, but that’s because of the way he’s gone about things.

    I’d bet most fans approve, at least in principal, of Ashley’s idea to build something like an Arsenal model at the club based on sensible spending instead of the Owens and Vidukas of old.”

    Even YOU admit that the fans didnt know how much debt there was – all past tense, all past circumstance. You now say that the fans NOW know that we needed to cut down YET the same circumstance existed BEFORE they were educated with the accounts etc BUT they chose to riot anyway!

    Therefore your second paragraph totally counters your first and tries to distance from their actions of the past and say “oh we understand now” I simply dont believe it – everyone hates Ashley first and foremost.

    The fundamentals of what he was trying to achieve were correct – then egos and hissy fits by a lot of people got in the way – Fans and KK included.

    Fans need to accept responsibility – it was a collective failing.

  45. “At least he has the capacity to think for himself, Bowburn.”.

    Is that a dig at me personally? 8O

    Or ‘Stardust’s Mob’? I guess I technically belong to it, because I don’t agree with him.

    Why is that you seem imply that people who chose to distrust and dislike Ashley for perfectly valid reasons, don’t have the capacity to think for themselves simply because it’s the majority?

    I never distrusted or disliked Ashley originally although I was sceptical. I berated Excelsior on other forums for suggesting the ‘asset-stripping’ but you can look back at transfer windows and see that Ashley has done as little as necessary to scrape through and more recently has made far more than we’ve spent on players.

    What we have left in our squad are the ‘previously untrieds’, ‘has-beens’, ‘freebies’ and ‘off-in-Decembers’. Somehow to his credit, Hughton has them all cellotaped together admirably and we’re sitting at the top of the league.

    However, along with this cheap and temporary feel, is it not acceptable that some will conclude differently to you guys and that it shouldn’t be mocked so indulgently?

  46. “workyticket says:
    October 26, 2009 at 2:16 pm
    bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    “I’ll just say you’re a very strange man Stardust.”

    At least he has the capaacity to think for himself, Bowburn.”

    Just a point Worky….you do this a lot. Pick out a quote that is aimed at Stardust and suffix it with “At least he……..” etc. etc. You’re not his manager are you?

    At least Bowburn is a splendid, courageous, charitable, amiable fellow with a full rich life, a good looking missus, and a loyal cadre of friends.

  47. “Riot” :)

    Gotta love those pesky rioters. Not sure how St James’ is still standing.

    There are some lunatics out there but you’re debating with slightly more sensible fellow supporters on here.
    A handful of radgies doesn’t represent the masses.

  48. Isn’t a “cadre” like an army though??

    I swear it wasn’t me leading them into ‘The Battle of Barrack Road’ back in 2008.

  49. BBM “but you can look back at transfer windows and see that Ashley has done as little as necessary to scrape through and more recently has made far more than we’ve spent on players.”

    I will have to remember the next time I spend 250million cleaning up someone else’s mess for the benefit of all that I am scraping by….oh….my….god.

  50. Hugh, Bowburn…I’m with you on the “Ashley 5 year Plan AKA Arsenal-on-a-budget”.

    The theory behind this thinking is totally sound. It’s forward looking, phlegmatic, practical, sustainable and right….in every sense. The need for a rational model for investment, and growth, at this club, is something that’s been gnawing away at us for years. Undermining the bedrock of the club with short term thinking has put is in the position that we are currently in.

    I therefore ask the question, if Ashley seriously intended to carry out this plan….why did he appoint people who couldn’t run a bath….let alone a football club, in all it’s key positions? He needed both business, and football, brains in place that could guide the club constructively, not sit there like bumps on logs…drawing salaries for nothing.

    We need the “Arsenal-on-a-Budget” strategy now more than ever, I hope to god there’s someone out there who can provide it for us.

  51. Excelsior says:
    October 26, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    “Just a point Worky….you do this a lot. Pick out a quote that is aimed at Stardust and suffix it with “At least he……..” etc. etc. You’re not his manager are you?”

    Twice in total, actually. That’s it so don’t exagerrate.

  52. BBM…..I’m using “Cadre” in it’s most “Peacenik” sense here so as not to offend anyone’s delicate sensibilities.

    You must have noticed Worky’s “At least he….” responses. Maybe he’s Stardusts minder?

    Altogether now “I could be so good for you, Love ya like ya want me to…..” Write the feem toon, sing the feem toon!!

  53. Arsenal don’t just do it on a shoe string though, they buy players for big money like Hleb, Arshavin etc when they need to. No club in the PL can get by without a resonable investment. Yes Arsenal have the best youuth structure but if you check their transfer dealings they also spend plenty of money.

    Secondly it’s easy for Ashley to release a statement saying he wants to run the club like Arsenal, saying and doing are 2 different things. Any person with half a brain can realise that’s the best way to run a club and release a statement to that effect.

    You also have to remember that the Arsenal statement came after the Keegan “FACT” statement the club put out, which if you remember was a load of lies.

  54. Mark Fenwick is the richest geordie as far as I know – from the last Sunday Times rich list – he was worth £365M

  55. Those appointments were his to make Excelsior – it wasnt for you to establish trust in those people it was for the man who was spending the money. He just didnt understand the Geordie xenophobes would riot on his appointments.

    Also BBM has just posted above you campaigned re the asset stripping too – too late for you to claim in hindsight that the plan was right.

    Admit you were wrong then you can accept thats the way.

    At the moment (if BBM is correct) youre a bit like a convict who wants releasing into society as reformed without a confession. It doesnt wash.

  56. Ashley has had a sell to buy transfer policy in every transfer window he’s over seen.

    I understand the club were and are skint so he didn’t allow the club to spend any money on decent players.

    Why didn’t he tell us?

    His biggest mistake was not doing due dilligence – Simple!

    We are all suffering for his rashness as he knew someone else was sniffing around wanting to buy he club.

    He was worried that someone else would come and make a quick profit like he WANTED to do.

  57. CLiNT FLiCK says:
    October 26, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    “Arsenal also SELL players for a good return.”

    That’s very true Clint. They’re miles ahead of other clubs in terms of ROI and profitabilty, once you bear in mind they’ve recently built a whacking new stadium and housing complex in the middle of London, which cost an absolute fortune.

  58. Stardust – Easy tiger, that’s a sneaky tactic, dividing to conquer.

    Excelsior held onto that view as a possibility back on another forum, while I rallied against, suggesting football clubs were not the place to make a fast buck. To be honest, I’m not sure how long he held that view because I stopped using the forum but I can categorically state that we all singularly supported the notion of an ‘Arsenal model’. Who wouldn’t of course?

    But there was and has really never been any hard evidence that the theory would become practice. Arsenal didn’t build from the bottom. Hence our spectacular failings.

  59. Worky, they are a ‘model club’ & no doubt.
    Many people, pundits, press & anyone else beginning with ‘P’ have had a big dig at Wenger et al. But they know what they’re doing & push through regardless & with some style.

  60. 1) There’s not such thing as an original thought. Someone has already thought of everything before, it’s just up to you to take those thoughts and ideas and improve on them.

    2) Why do people still take Stardust seriously? Read his posts, he only does it for effect, he even admits this himself. On more than one occasion he has stated that he often puts out statements to generate debate, whether he believes in them or not. Personally I think that tactic is a bit sad, I mean why try and stand up for something you don’t believe in?

    3) Why suddenly is there this siege mentality with workyticket and stardust on one side and seemingly everyone else on the other? Don’t make me be Switzerland. They make nice watches, but who wants to be Swiss?

    4) I think this blog is quickly desending into just another blog on the internet. It started out good and still has potential as there are some very erudite posters on here, but name calling and general child like behaviour may drive away some of the more mature posters. Just my opinion.

  61. Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 3:14 pm
    Ginola – I did repond to your questions the other day – but it was later in the day.

    Yes i read your reply, i disagreed with it but thanks all the same. :-)

  62. Stuart”I understand the club were and are skint so he didn’t allow the club to spend any money on decent players.”

    You understand in retrospect – you campaigned hatred when you were being told to wait for the accounts.

    Why didn’t he tell us? – everyone knew of his finding youth strategy blended with experience – remember the red bus (which I was pilloried for)

    “His biggest mistake was not doing due dilligence – Simple”

    Just as well he didnt – he saved us from ruin – if he hadnt bought us – when the financial meltdown arrrived we were over and out.

  63. Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Just as well he didnt – he saved us from ruin – if he hadnt bought us – when the financial meltdown arrrived we were over and out.

    So NUFC wouldhave been the first British football club to go bust in 25 years?

    Doubt it.

  64. On youth policies. West Ham and Spurs have churned out better local youths than Arsenal. All in my own opinion of course.

  65. BBM “I stopped using the forum but I can categorically state that we all singularly supported the notion of an ‘Arsenal model’. Who wouldn’t of course?”

    Eh – the majority of fans of NUFC – you included! They werent interested – they wanted trophy signings.

  66. MT – agreed on Spurs and West Ham. I’d have killed for some of the class they produce. And Boro to an ever so slightly lesser degree.

    Let’s be honest. Who wants to pay through the nose when you can get something for sod-all?? It doesn’t make sense. I’d prefer our players got the headlines for what they do on the pitch not for a one-off signing.

  67. MT “On more than one occasion he has stated that he often puts out statements to generate debate, whether he believes in them or not. Personally I think that tactic is a bit sad, I mean why try and stand up for something you don’t believe in?”

    So I can test my rationale – isnt that what debate is about – seeing what stands up to scrutiny throughout all of the salient points?

  68. “Eh – the majority of fans of NUFC – you included! They werent interested – they wanted trophy signings.”

    Stardust – Just so I’m clear…….you’re including me in the majority and implying I wanted trophy signings?

  69. Not really BBM lol – I cant remember your detailed position pre walkout.

    However I stand by the majority certainly did – it was a ticking bomb – a tinderbox waiting to burn. KK was the spark that ignited the volatile situation.

  70. Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    “So I can test my rationale – isnt that what debate is about – seeing what stands up to scrutiny throughout all of the salient points?”

    The Socratic method of dialectics.

  71. “The Socratic method of dialectics.”

    T’would be a noble and grand gesture if that were all it were, alas I fear it is less pure than that, and at times it is simply that our dear colleague is self-indulgent. Not that I’d change him for the world of course.

  72. You two have probably forgotten by now, throughout everything that has come to pass, just how much of a fence-sitter I actually was. I have the spelks to prove it.

  73. Jeez Micky, how big are you….you’d have to go some to be Switzerland; but good luck in your chosen profession.

    You’ll be lauded for your watches, chocolate and hidden caches of Nazi gold so….the beers are on you!!

    So Stardust claims not only a monopoly on the truth but also intimate knowledge of everyone’s post history. Down to telling us what opinions we hold/do not hold….staggering.

    TeamTalk is the site BBM is on about. He and I have spent many fruitless hours batting around the rights and wrongs of this club on that very blog. He knows exactly what my position has been throughout.

  74. Anyway, I’m going to try and write a piece on the ‘on-field’ events the neet. Anyone up for that?

    MT – you might need to do some extra-curricular blogging to get involved!! Not often you’re here past 5?

  75. bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    “Anyway, I’m going to try and write a piece on the ‘on-field’ events the neet. Anyone up for that?”

    Yup. It does no harm to have the odd bit about football every so often.

  76. BBM, I don’t really have the time. To be honest, when I’m not in meetings, I’m in front of a laptop all day, I can’t really be bothered to switch it on again at night.
    Plus by the time I’ve bathed the little un, put her to bed and then ate my tea, I’m pretty much done for the evening.

    I can verify BBM fence sitting ability as I was sat right next to him, and if I remember correctly he never shared his strawberry bon bons, yet he expected me to give him a cup of stewed tea from my thermos flask.

  77. MT – if only life were so simple for me. I do all of that and then when I’m just ready to relax, worky gets out his big blogstick and whacks me until I write something. I’ve even had to start running home from the station, but it’s no fun running with my gear on my back because it’s another stone I’m carrying.

    And ye nicked arl of the fizzy cola bottles. Fair’s fair.

  78. If Wise etc were buying into the Arsenal model, then why did they sell Milner and try and line up Bastian Schweinsteiger as a replacement – this seems to be completely the reverse policy – selling a promising youngster for an established trophy signing, which admittedly fell through.

  79. Cos Schweinsteiger is better than milner & we got ‘silly money’ for milner.
    Didn’t come off like you say, but woulda been a top replacement. Close but no cigar.

  80. bowburnmag says:
    October 26, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    “And ye nicked arl of the fizzy cola bottles. Fair’s fair.”

    I’m actually scoffing away at a load of foam shrimps and mushrooms at the moment. Remember those Bowburn?

  81. Worky – I think all article-writers should get some delivered for morale and sustenance!!

    Although can I have those little fruit salad chews and some milky bottles? I’ll wash them down with a litre of Marksy’s finest tonight. Better write my article first……

  82. Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    “Maybe because 12million for Milner was like selling a mini at Ferrari money”

    Hmmm. I divven’t knaa about that one. Like many Newcatle players, he was more like a Ferrari with a bit of a blockage in the carburretor. Two quality mechanics have taken a look at him, and seem to be fixing the problem.

  83. Milner STILL hasn’t done anything out of the ordinary & it just goes to show what a lack of wingers england has at it’s disposal, doesn’t it?

  84. Yep Clint – profoundly average is how Id describe him, I hardly saw him ever beat his first man – corners, free Kicks, Crosses or otherwise.

    Now Ginola – theres a winger….dewey eyed….

  85. Aye, Ginola on a good day. Gillespie on a good day.
    Waddle, robert on a good day.
    Although, Bramble, remember him, doing alright these days.
    N’zog-Mmmm.
    Duff-Good goal y/day.
    Saha- great goal y/day.
    Beye-?
    etc, etc

  86. Bellamy-still a great player.
    Boumsong-juve
    Bassong-off the boil?
    Bowyer, Dyer, ambrose, Owen, same as.

  87. SO69,
    they probably clean the pages up after jokers change them, periodically.
    Football clubs probably have more silly changes than most.

  88. Hugh D.P.
    Have to say i agree with all four statements in regard to Ashley and have stated so on various blogs.
    It`s really an unfortunate state of affairs that took place over the last couple of years.
    Do I believe for one minute that Ashley or the fans intended or expected the present stand off, no way.
    And I will list what I believe were some of the main reasons for this unfortunate circumstance.
    Certainly a combination of hidden debt, (buyer beware) poor implication of a business plan, mainly by making awful management choices,just about everyone he hired, the lot.
    And finally i am sure business losses due to the recession had it`s effect.
    Bizarre really !
    Well we seem to be stuck with one another, as I can`t envision any sale in this present economy.
    What i do say is no one comes out of this looking good, Ashley has been proven to be both stubborn and uncommunicative, the fans demanding and aggressive.
    And some of our prior heroes appear a bit flawed.

  89. Chuck,

    Well there is definitely a reason why nobody is wanting to buy the club. We hear that there’s been at least half a dozen done due dilligence but no offers????

  90. Stuart79 says:
    October 26, 2009 at 6:58 pm
    Chuck,

    “Well there is definitely a reason why nobody is wanting to buy the club.”

    Stuart, it’s blindingly obvious why no-one wants to buy the club.

  91. chuck says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    “Bairns and Americans Workey ?
    Howeh man !”

    I cut that bit out in case any of my American friends saw it. Now you’ve gone and dropped me right in it! ;-)

  92. Ever think about it, “howeh man” is the Geordie variation of the wise guys “fugedaboudit”, or vice versa.
    Depends on how you pronounce it.

  93. Stuart79 says: “Well there is definitely a reason why nobody is wanting to buy the club. We hear that there’s been at least half a dozen done due dilligence but no offers????”

    £100m (or even £80m) is too much.

  94. Hugh de Payen says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:19 pm
    Stuart79 says: “Well there is definitely a reason why nobody is wanting to buy the club. We hear that there’s been at least half a dozen done due dilligence but no offers????”

    £100m (or even £80m) is too much.

    It is when there’s a huge debt to be taken on also.

  95. The reason Ashley has`nt sold the club ?
    In the words of ‘Slick Willy ‘”It`s the economy stupid.”
    Fugedaboudit ! Unless some rash Arab with more money than sense, decides he wants a new toy.
    No one from the US is interested, however were a salary cap to be put in place (it will eventually) it would be a no brainer.

  96. Hugh de Payen says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    “£100m (or even £80m) is too much.”

    Don’t be silly Hugh, NUFC aren’t Birmingham City, they are a world club. In the right hands potential revenue streams could be enormous. Alas, they are a poisoned chalice though.

  97. Stuart, to be honest we can’t really know why nobody is prepared to pay Ashley’s asking price unless the ex-bidder tells us. I remember one of them saying that there were more debts than is publicly implied, but they didn’t go into detail, presumably due to the non-disclosure.

    Some would suggest the ‘poison chalice’ effect might put bidders off but, whilst I can’t discount that the turmoil of recent years might have some effect, I think it’s more likely to be a matter of pure finance in the end.

  98. workyticket says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    I can agree with that but wealthy people tend to only want to spend top dollar on a PL club with that gaurenteed income.

    It’s not just the asking price though imo. The accounts show that the club owe £100m or there abouts to Ashley.

    Not to mention the overdraft ect…

    That’s a massive outlay for a PL club, let alone a Championship Club.

  99. workyticket says: “Don’t be silly Hugh, NUFC aren’t Birmingham City, they are a world club. In the right hands potential revenue streams could be enormous. Alas, they are a poisoned chalice though.”

    Sorry, I don’t fully buy this poison chalice stuff. As per my previous comment, I don’t discount it entirely, but I think the reasons why we haven’t been bought are mostly financial.

  100. On selling the club
    As Tony Blair said when questioned in parliament.
    In regard to the question i refer my learned friend to my answer in article 125#

  101. chuck says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    “Workey.
    Shit! Hope i`m not becoming the PC police here.”

    “PC Police” sounds like a tautology if you think about it, Chuck. :-)

    On the subject of being non PC, get yourself an American lass while you’re over there. They’re much dirtier than Geordie lasses! ;-)

  102. Worky, there might be something in that. I guess about half a dozen or so consortia must have done due diligence if the press is to be believed and I suspect they would only want the club at a much lower price, even assuming they had the money in the first place (which is doubtful anyway).

    The club went on the market during a recession when people aren’t buying ‘toys’, which is what a football club is in some ways.

    I’m still not convinced about Ashley writing off his £110m loan either, which makes for a huge debt any would-be owner will inherit. Even without that there’s the overdraft, the high wage bill, the investment needed to build a competitive PL club, the money owed on ancient transfers etc.

    As you say, there is potential there of course, but it’s going to take a fair bit of effort to realise it. Maybe in more buoyant financial times it would be a more attractive investment.

    Poison chalice? Well maybe, but I think a lot of would-be owners would fancy their chances will a ‘poison chalice’ that brings in a 40,000+ (or even a 30,000+) crowd in the Championship.

  103. workyticket says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:48 pm

    On the subject of being non PC, get yourself an American lass while you’re over there. They’re much dirtier than Geordie lasses!

    Is that possible?

  104. It was made public knowledge that we were in fact owed more in transfer money, than we owed out. Around the time ashley took over, remember?
    You talk like we don’t bring any money in.
    We’re still consistantly, at least, top 5 gates a week/fortnight.

  105. Hey, blogs doing good, plenty of hits here, albeit at Ed`s expense.
    Wondered if anyone would be interested in giving Doocey a bit of business as he has gone to the trouble to starting a blog of his own and could probably use a few hits.
    Not asking anyone to abandon ship folks, just feel he deserves some attention for his effort.

  106. Hugh de Payen says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Hugh,

    I saw David Sullivan interviewed recently and he did say that Newcastle was a monster club with great fans but with a huge debt!

    These people buy clubs to ultimately make money. They buy clubs with big fan bases and huge potential. They would see the supporters as huge assets that could be harnessed in the future to bring more success and revenue.

    Provided they knew how to run a club. They probably wouldn’t so they would employ someone to do that who knew how to.

    I know some think were the clubs biggest asset and worst enemy but treated right were the best in the world bar none. Treated with distain, used and taken for granted were angry – Name me a set of fans who wouldn’t be after going throug what we’ve been through recently…

  107. Makes me laugh people speculating on the valuation. Gentlemen teams of corporate financiers have valued the company – it has a price on it – the main trouble is not the price of NUFC it is the other discounted opportunities available in this market for those holding cash.

    Put simply – if you had a car lot full of Ferraris – you would buy the cheapest ones first – the ones that would bring the biggest profit to sell later. Cash is scarce at the moment, discounted opportunities are plentiful.

    Money will simply buy the largest discounted companies whilst factoring all risk to ensure a maximum return on exit. No more no less.

  108. CLiNT FLiCK says:
    October 26, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    “We’re still consistantly, at least, top 5 gates a week/fortnight.”

    In recent times, it’s about far more than home gates though, it’s about brand recognition throughout the world. We must get back into the Premiership though.

  109. To be fair Stuart, Ashley has until recently always insisted he wanted £100m. Anyone could have paid that and bought it. He’s now compromised and dropped his price to £80m, so it’s up to Moat to find that.

    If the telegraph’s report is true and Ashley’s reneging on a promise of a 60-20 deal then that’s a bit naughty (and if he knows Moat can’t find the £80m up front you would indeed have to ask if Ashley really wants to sell the club now).

  110. The man has skin thicker than a railway sleeper!

    I think as the article states that he’s trying to get as much out of Moat as possible. The stumbling block for Ashley comes when he has pushed Moat too far and he walks away.

    Ashley is going to have to pay for the day to day running of the club. That’s his gamble – Sell more players and jeopodise the club going up or paying out of his own pocket.

    Their always looking for that one big win to cover their losses – That’s the gambler for you.

  111. What you say makes sense 141# Stardust.
    Certainly in reference to a club like Arsenal, however clubs like Liverpool and Man. U., I believe are far too heavily leveraged and could in fact be in serious financial trouble,were they to be unsuccessful in both the PL and Europe.
    Though both reap enormous earnings from being widely recognizable brands and have been able to keep their heads above water(debt service)with success from both merchandising and success on the field, one bad season and who knows ?
    It should be obvious that the present system (English Premier League)is out of control and badly needs a salary cap.
    Yes I realize i will get an argument on this, however my argument is the NBA, AFL& NFL,and others, all sports governed by a system using a salary cap, they are without doubt the most profitable sports franchises, for both players and owners alike.
    They also have more parity between teams with very few dynastic clubs dominating for years on end.
    It`s only a matter of time before a salary cap based system is introduced in Europe.
    Perhaps a super league or possibly in the EPL, but it will happen.

  112. Football like politics makes strange bedfellows, never thought I would be in total agreement with Stardust.
    Just not sure whether we are in agreement about the salary cap or the Amstel ?
    Outa here !

  113. Chuck – when you do come back on – please complete your profile pic – May I suggest Waldorf and Statler?

  114. I beleive in a salary cap for the bloated plutocrats who live off the proceeds of other people’s talent. The players, most of whom are working class, who’s career are short and can be ended at any minute should be allowed to fill their boots as much as they can while they can.

  115. It’s only since jimmy hill in the early 60’s that footballers stopped being little more than slaves.
    Says a lot about the people who have been running/ruining football from time.
    Inc, the fa, fifa, uefa & almost every owner of every club.

  116. Stardust! You backed Ashley from day one, you said give him a chance, you said he is doing everything right, you said he was best thing to happen to toon!! Now he has been proven to be a bare faced liar, you turn your opinion to us the true fans, to deflect your inadequacies in predicting how a fellow moron of yours would make nufc great!! Now go jump off the Tyne bridge you arrogant moron! Your not wanted on blogs, in St James, or in Newcastle!! Bye bye ashley batty boy xx

  117. 153’s a bit Citizen Smith for me Worky – I am not sure when you can ever draw the line at deserving v non deserving unless inherited and “old money” exploitation exists.

    The romance of the idea is sound but the thin line of acceptance is too thin to draw and will be drawn all over the place according to the viewpoint of the individual.

  118. I was sick to my stomach to read that sepp(tic) bladder was gonna run for office for another 4 years, or whatever it is. That guy is bad news.

  119. Stardust says:
    October 26, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    “153’s a bit Citizen Smith for me Worky”

    No at all Stardust, it’s actually the exact opposite if you think about it. Salary caps are a restriction of the ‘free market’. ;-)

  120. how can yous idiots keep arguing with an idiot like stardust? Stop feeding him. He hasnt got an argument. Just laugh at him. He is clueless.

  121. my feeling is that newcastle has been ruind long therm because of the overspending from sheperd. And he allso managed to disilusion the fans by making the world record buy of shearer,the big spending on owen and trowed out money for luque, boumsong and others and at the same time managed to sack bobby robson when there was some long therm planning and stability in the club, then ashley all new to the game came inn and made a lot of bad decisions for the club and hired unproven people to run a club that already was in bad shape. you cant blame it on ashley beeing the only ones fault or shepperd being the only ones fault, because in reality it is a string of bad desicions from 10 years back. The best we can do now is to lay it all behind us and get togheter supporting the club and push togheter as a club united wheter it would be a new board or the sitting board

  122. now we are sitting in limbo in the ccc and arguing amongst the fans and letting the press piss all over us with new stories coming out every hour about who’s to blame, whos coming in and when? its really sad because when you think of it everybody is shraggin of the press, but people still are asuming things that are the same shit the press puts out every day!

  123. @ norwegian9
    we cant move on until the fat horrible liar gets out of our club. Stop stating the obvious who is to blame and then say lets move on. Ashley is clueless, a proven liar and couldnt give two stuffs about the fans. We wont put this behind us til he sells up.

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