THRU BLACK & WHITE EYES – Enough Already – 15/Apr/15

by • April 15, 2015 • TBAWEComments (26)2019

It’s not often that Newcastle United can surprise me these days and after a wholly MA1predictable and routine defeat to Liverpool complete with inept defending and barely a threat in attack with the brain-dead sending off the team’s “leader” Sissoko, I had a kind of comforting warmth that the club had no shocks left.

How wrong I was!

The news United has published its accounts and revealed it had £34m available at the end of the last financial year in June 14 left me speechless. It’s almost as if the people Ashley has running Newcastle United want to piss us off.


Today’s release of the accounts has just left me dumbfounded. Not that the money is there, every qualified and independent financial forecast suggested the amount of money that has been announced in the club’s books. No, it’s just that the club has allowed these accounts to be published in the run up to what will be the largest demonstration against the Ashley regime in the eight utterly depressing years the man has stunk out St James’ Park.

Let’s get it on the record, while the club was squandering a £6m fee and associated wages BoycottSpurs+FB-1on Riviere and God knows what else in salary on Ferreya, the club had £34m at its disposal but was unable to push through deals for the likes of Gomis (available on a free and who had been widely scouted by Carr) or Lyon’s Alexandre Lacazette with whom we are persistently linked.  Although that money was available, Newcastle United was raking around in the bargain bucket and coming up with not very much at all. Don’t forget Papiss Cisse has been unfit for at least 12 months and Siem de Jong’s fitness record in Holland always suggested fitful contributions.


It’s at least three years now since it has been blindingly obvious that we have needed serious reinforcement at centre-half. We have Colo, who great servant though he might have been is a fading force and appears to have his commitment to the B&W shirt compromised. We have Williamson who is painfully out of his depth in the PL. We have Steven Taylor who is injury prone and we have Paul Dummett who it seems is a better central defender than left-back. Despite no reinforcements at all, we packed Mbwia off to Roma and recruited no-one. We sent Davide Santon to Italy as well in January and no-one replaced him either. All with £34m sitting in the bank.


We also hear the salary to turnover ratio is down to 60%. That sounds wonderful I bet to accountants but maybe not ones who support Newcastle United.

We have heard  (or rather read, I’ve never heard the bloke’s voice) Lee Charnley lecture theMA2 Fans Forum on the recklessness of competing for Cup competitions as it threatens the delicate financial structure of the good ship Newcastle United. We saw Newcastle United perform abysmally in front of 4000 travelling fans at Leicester and make its traditional Third Round exit in the Midlands. All with £34m sitting in the bank!


The availability of that money placed alongside the crying and desperate need for team-strengthening tells you everything you want to know about the ambition of Mike Ashley’s Newcastle United. Or rather the desperate absence of it.

Not that the £34m is the only money we have available come the summer. It will have been added to by virtue of the additional monies raised by the sales of Santon and Mbwia and the compensation received from Palace for Pardew. That will also mean that the pay-bill will have fallen again as well.

By the time the transfer window opens again in June, United will have had another year’sBoycottSpurs+FB-1 profit at its finger tips for investment. I’ll leave you to decide whether we’ll be looking at the likes of Lacazette or whether Graeme Carr has been reading through the small-print of some St Etienne reserve striker of the quality of a Riviere, who might be available on a free.

I’ll leave you to speculate on whether Perez, Sissoko, Janmaat, Krul won’t be punted to the highest bidder come the summer and whether the club will be looking to unload Tiote and Cisse. I don’t doubt players will be bought but I feel confident plenty will be sold and we will start next season with the same standard of mediocrity we currently have. Ashley will preside over the football equivalent of re-arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic (incidentally, the name of the hotel United stayed at on Monday).

I’m absolutely confident the players brought in will be using United as a stepping stone to greater things and Ashley will be looking to sell them at a profit. Whatever Ashley is building at St James’ Park, it isn’t a football team.

I’m cynical because we have had eight spirit-sapping years of Mike Ashley’s bloodless, corporate defeatism and we know Ashley’s objective is simply to remain on the PL gravy train and nothing else.

The complete absence of joy, hope, anticipation has brought us to our knees.

£34m doesn’t tell us the whole story. The club is generating profits but is hideously under-MA3performing as anyone who has examined the collapse in every funding channel at United can testify. Ticket money, commercial, merchandise, corporate, all down and all less in 2015 to what it was in 2007. Well-run club? Don’t make laugh.

These accounts tell us unequivocally what the game-plan is at United and it has absolutely nothing to do with football, dreams, ambition, hope and anticipation.

If anyone was in any doubt whatsoever about what Ashley is up to today’s financial results scream it into your face.

So, what can we do?

Well, we can get off our knees for a start. We can shake ourselves out of this depression that we are in and we can fight back.

That fight-back starts on Sunday when unless you have been living under a rock for the last ten days you are all invited to #BoycottSpurs.

There are those whose defeatism is so ingrained that they cannot use their imaginations to understand the power of swathes of empty seats live on SKY. They cannot understand the damage this will inflict upon the attractiveness of Newcastle United as a choice for live matches in future with these kinds of actions hanging over SJP fixtures. Ashley might have some of our season ticket money for these games but he does not have Murdoch’s and he will not get it if the stands are empty.

Rightly, some claim #BoycottSpurs will not sufficiently damage Ashley where he BoycottSpurs+FB-1understands it best – in his pocket. Maybe not immediately but when the Premier League clocks what is going on at United and when SKY and BT do likewise then the pressure you and I are forcing upon Ashley becomes altogether more powerful.

No-one in their right mind would claim one action such as #BoycottSpurs will see Ashley hitch up his skirts and flee down St James’ Boulevard. Of course it won’t. But it is only the start in what I am confident will be a sustained campaign to make Newcastle United just too much bother for Ashley and to persuade him to sell-up and move on.

I understand there are those who see Ashley as a symptom rather than the cause of football’s problems. I have articulated that view myself. I completely agree football should not provide the environment for sharks such as Ashley to operate in.

There are those who claim lacks a sophistication to it and it will be rendered impotent by the wider inequities of football. I understand that point but it’s as if nothing else is going on in the wider game amongst supporters groups.

The Newcastle United Supporters Trust has played a pivotal role as part of a network of ASHLEYOUTCOMothers led by Supporters Direct and the Football Supporters Federation and it’s as a result of such lobbying that the Labour Party will make such key manifesto commitments going into the forthcoming General Election. The argument of football fans is being won all over the country, high and low. The balls are bouncing our way.

But does allow us the opportunity for a collective howl at the trashing of our beloved football club. It allows us the opportunity for us to come together and shout NO to Ashley. It allows us to reclaim our self-respect because throughout the dark, cold years of Ashley at United, many of us have felt sullied by our lack of a response to the sourness this man has brought to our club, our city and our region. We have been Ashley’s bitches for too long.

I am not really arsed about what some van-driver from Kent phoning into Talksport to whine at a braying Adrian Durham or some such thinks about our club or us. Fuck him. Fuck Robbie Savage. Fuck Stan Collymore. Fuck Patrick Barclay and every other half-baked prick who can barely string a thought together.

Sunday is about us. It is about you and your love for Newcastle United and your pride in what it should, what is could represent.

On this occasion, we supporters can achieve far more for Newcastle United by NOT BoycottSpurs+FB-1clicking through the turnstile on Sunday. That empty seat will speak far louder than you ever could by sitting in it this Sunday.

At the risk of being accused of being provocative and possibly divisive, I would ask those who intend to go on Sunday, what they hope to achieve by ignoring #BoycottSpurs? Whose cause that does support? The long-term future of Newcastle United or the short term gain of Mike Ashley.

Make no mistake about it, every supporter who ignores #BoycottSpurs offers succour and encouragement to Ashley. I’m sorry to say that but it is the truth.

Every empty seat on Sunday is a personal challenge to Ashley and every occupied one can only convince him he can continue.

Fight Ashley. Save Newcastle United.


Keep On, Keepin’ On …







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26 Responses to THRU BLACK & WHITE EYES – Enough Already – 15/Apr/15

  1. Phil Bell says:

    Fantastic, impassioned writing. Some people will hate the last few paragraphs, but it needed saying.

  2. Lee says:

    i have to admit I was in 2 minds whether to boycott or not on Sunday but after reading this my minds made up. I will be joining hopefully thousands of others in Leazes Park to boycott the match and try to make a difference.

  3. Lee says:

    I have to admit I was in 2 minds whether to boycott or not on Sunday but after reading this my minds made up. I will be joining hopefully thousands of others in Leazes Park to boycott and try to make a difference

  4. Rob Brown says:

    Good man you . Thank you

  5. Marc Corby says:

    With permission I will quote to those who still believe attending on Sunday will do any good.

    the match really is irrelevant.

    Our future as Newcastle United supporters certainly is not.

    FFS #BoycottSpurs

  6. Sando says:

    You get what you deserve Newcastle fans.
    If you turn up on Sunday, you are a traitor to the legacy of the Newcastle United that should be passed on to future generations, your kids. You’re a traitor to your club, you’re a traitor to your city, and a traitor to your region.
    If you fight hard enough, you’ll get rid of this parasite, and you’ll get what you deserve. A legacy of a club to be proud of. If you roll over and continue to attend this game and future games, then you’ll get what you deserve; to be fed shit and smile about it, while the rest of the country laughs at you.

    • David Chapman says:

      well said matey, been saying the same thing for years, its only now people have started listening, shame it took so bloody long!

  7. Emile Strunz says:

    When smaller clubs like Southampton and Swansea have shown that you can operate in the Premier League with a good business model, with hope, and with a progressive forward-thinking outlook, I look to the fat man and I weep.
    I’m convinced he’s a complete sociopath. Obsessed with money, and screwing the competition. Where’s the fun in that? W**ga. Sports Direct. Zero Hours Contracts, Re-branding the stadium. Dennis W**e. Living proof that money doesn’t buy you class. He’s a toxic parasite

  8. Dave says:

    Another excellent article, honest & straight from the heart & as Phil says, the last few paragraphs will piss many NUFC fans off who will still attend but doing nothing is exactly what the Fat Controller is hoping for. One small step eh? I’m going to Greggs on the way to Leazes Park so the Ducks will be eating freshly cooked stotties. See you all on Sunday.

  9. Gavnufc says:

    Excellent to see local publications throwing weight behind the campaign when all to easy to sit on the fence.

    Would love to see the chronicle get behind it, as huge a billboard that social media brings, I feel there is still a huge older generation of ‘fans’ that aren’t fully exposed to the campaign through it. It’s up to us to spread the word.

    Boycott Spurs

  10. Peter Shearer says:

    I will certainly be at Leazes Park and can hardly wait to get there.I am praying that there will be thousands of us to save our club and all of what it stands for.Let’s be a bit careful re name calling of those that do not join us-as many of them may be swayed once they see the level of support we have.The ones that are pro-Ashley are probably a small minority-and will eventually be shown as such.But let us make it easy for as many people as possible to join in.Even those who attend the game may join in the singing at the end,so keep our options open!

    On one or two other Newcastle fansites, the pro-Ashley guys reckon we are about 300 in number. Let us hit them with a huge turnout to ram their arrogance down their throats.

    Over the top we go! The war commences!

  11. Milo79 says:

    I haven’t attended games on a regular basis for years now, so maybe I have no right to comment. But I certainly wouldn’t want to be among the compliant and complacent in the crowd on Sunday. Boycott one game, get the media talking, deny the fatman that which he takes for granted each and every week – and let that shower on the pitch know that your support is unconditional only so long as they seem to give a toss about playing for this club.

  12. Nigel Pearson says:

    United We Stand Divided We Fall ! Don’t Let this Interloper Divide Us. We are Geordies, We Are Proud Some Say We are Off Our Heads but We Owe It to Our Forefathers and Our Descendants to Give Every Last Drop of Our Devotion to Save NUFC and Make Our City Proud ! Viva La Revolution !!!

  13. Tom Bates says:

    Hope people do the right thing. If this doesnt get the suppport of the SJP regulars then we might as well sit back for ten more years of Ashley. Its a certainty that some London pundit will be trotted out on Sky Sports news to inform us that we are lucky to be in the league, which is basically saying, little North Easterners, know your place! However there is no doubt that Newcastle is a big club with huge untapped potential, the potential tha has been shown in more recent times under Keegan and Robson. I hope Sky provide unbiased coverage of the incident rather than focusing on a few kids with bedsheets. If we are inded a big club we need to show it, there is no way the likes of Liverpool or man U I hate to say it sitting back and allowing their clubs name to be dragged through the mud.

  14. clarky says:

    I’m all for boycotting but it’s after this that worries me. I think Sunday has gathered a bit momentum and there will be a few there but the majority will turn up next Saturday and we will be back to square one and all will be forgotten about. It’s our fans crippling the club then they piss n moan about it all week………don’t f*uking go then!!!!!!

  15. Andrew Thompson says:

    One of many fantastic articles penned on here over the past week. Anyone who knows someone not prepared to take part in the boycott needs to show them this as well as the George Caulkin piece on If they still can’t be persuaded then they’re beyond help and clearly don’t want what’s best for NUFC.

  16. Davey says:

    Superb piece, Michael.

    Think it needed said about supporters turning up not helping the ultimate cause of getting rid however much that might needle some of our fans who will attend on Sunday. And yes, it has been a rather rotten feeling gnawing away at this fan in particular at the lack of fight in our body of support as a whole, however I’m sensing a change in this apathetic mood and it’s a change for the better. Also you are spot on in your derision of Mr Talksport Tosser from the South East who will inevitably ring up that station or the BBC to gurn on the usual shite about a club who nobody is bothered about yet bothered enough to pick up a phone and talk a national radio station. Fuck ’em.

  17. patricia hodgson says:

    i have read all the articles and just hope that we all stand together and boycott I am one of them who was undecided but now boycott all the way. good work

  18. skarabrae says:

    well said.

  19. Pat Hughes says:

    Really hope Sunday’s boycott is successful and leads to more productive initiatives. But my disillusionment with football goes beyond the greedy bastard bleeding our club dry of passion and dignity – in many ways Ashley is a symptom of the PL model, run by people who are content to sit back and watch the sport being destroyed by business, content to sit in their London counting house and dismiss high ticket prices, unfair wages as being the remit of individual clubs, not their responsibility etc etc. it is their responsibility, they’ve created this greedy structure without batting an eyelid. A structure where greedy bastards like Ashley can flourish without question. Hate it all – BoycottSpurs and continue to fight until Ashley has packed his cheap carrier bags. The PL next

  20. mikey says:

    fantastic article.

    I agree about fans who turn up to the match on saturday but we’ve got to be careful not to alienate passive support. Only a tiny mindless few actually support Ashley, many are apathetic, some are passively supportive of a boycott but won;t themseves.

    However, once they see how massive it is they must be offered the chance to join us undivided with their dignity intact.

    If you are in two minds, i would say, you will NEVER regret boycotting one game and marching to Leazes park with your fellow fans, but you may live to forever regret your choice to go t the match and not be part of this massive occasion happening outside the ground.

    • jack says:

      The spurs game has to be a starting point not just a one off event as it won’t in my opinion be a huge success due to the attitude of so many people who still go. The ones who moan all game about Ashley and so on then still turn. Even if 10000 didn’t go that’s a start it might make people more willing to join in future protests. Most people will want to see a big turn out before they get involved. As long as at least 10000 don’t go and there’s no one being harassed for still going to the game we can build on this. I stopped going in January I don’t see why anyone can even be arsed to turn up anymore it was beginning to feel more like a chore. I also worry how much some older fans who won’t be so exposed to social media will have picked up on all of this. That’s why there needs to be a big turn out and no one giving people any grief or acting like idiots in order to get people to join on the day.

      • jack says:

        One other quick point why is the media the chronicle sky pundits ect and people like carver telling us that we are entitled to boycott the game? do we need permission? who the fuck do they think they are? We pay our ticket money and sky tv subscriptions that keep all these in jobs, nufc and any other club for that matter is nothing with out it’s fans.

      • rich says:

        Jack, i have to agree and you make a valid point. While many if not all supporters will be aware of the boycott, a significant proportion who don’t use social media will be unaware of the potential magnitude or significance of the event.

  21. David Chapman says:

    Great piece of writing, pretty much sums life under Ashley up, I gave up my season ticket 2 years ago but I’ll definitely be at Leazes Park on Sunday!!