Fans split over shock sale of Nolan

by Martin Lindsay

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

After the news broke this lunch time on Newcastle captain Kevin Nolan’s imminent medical at West Ham, fans have once again been divided on Tyneside as to what they believe to be the truth behind yet another astounding decision.

Despite Nolan rejecting a contract extension last week, this is a transfer that has taken everybody by surprise. For all contract negotiations between club and player seemed to have broken down, few were worried as Nolan still had two years remaining on his current deal at St James’ Park.

However we all know by now that anything is possible in football, and more so with the soap opera that is Newcastle United.

Losing Andy Carroll in January was a major blow, but to lose Nolan in these circumstances leaves a bitter taste in the mouth of many Newcastle supporters as they prepare themselves for a turbulent summer ahead.

Editor of Newcastle fanzine ToonTalk, Steve Wraith, who had been in contact with Nolan today, made it clear who he blames for the now expected departure of a ‘mate’.

“The sooner we are rid of Mike Ashley the better.

Kevin Nolan is a mate of mine, he backed the regime when others didn’t and he feels he has been let down,” Wraith explained.

It’s important to make clear that Nolan hasn’t yet signed for West Ham, but on completing his medical tomorrow it’s inevitable he will again link up with his former Bolton boss Sam Allardyce – leaving Newcastle fans with more questions than answers.

All fans will express their opinion on the subject, but I am a firm believer that Newcastle’s captain has been told he is leaving a club of where he is so highly regarded.

Magazine editor Wraith is in agreement, categorically stating that his friend Nolan did not want to leave.

“100 percent he didn’t want to go. He wanted to end his career here but unfortunately that hasn’t happened.”

Why would he want to leave? He is captain of a club looking to re-establish themselves in the top half of the Premier League. If he wasn’t in it for the long run surely he would have jumped ship when Newcastle were relegated?

Of course there are always two sides to every story so I can see why fans would suggest he could have still turned the Hammers down, but this is all after this unnecessary situation had been initiated – of which I believe was none of Kevin Nolan’s doing.

Midfielder Joey Barton, a close friend of Nolan, expressed his shock via his Twitter feed saying: “Just on my way to Ascot, feel sick. Great player, leader, captain, person, trainer and mostly a friend for life. Devastated to see him SOLD.”

There’s a common trend now beginning to take shape at Newcastle. On the back of being relegated to the Championship in 2009, Newcastle found a core of players that were the catalyst in them returning to the Premier League at the first attempt.

There was a togetherness in the squad that was absent the previous season. Steve Harper, Steven Taylor, Andy Carroll, Alan Smith, Barton, Nolan and of course boss Chris Hughton were key in regaining Newcastle’s top flight status, yet how many of these faces will be at St James’ next season? Probably two.

Editor Wraith believes this is a plan of Ashley’s as he looks to bring in cheaper options as replacements.

“They (Ashley and Derek LLambias) want to break up the players union and they’re doing it. They are looking to get all the top earners off the wage bill,” believes Wraith.

 It’s been one thing after another for Newcastle fans following the Kevin Keegan debacle in 2008. Following Keegan’s departure the club admitted they intentionally mislead fans as “an exercise in public relations”, so how are Newcastle fans to trust anything the club says on this matter?

As expected the close season uncertainty on Tyneside has begun with the imminent departure of their captain. It seems it will only be a matter of time before Ashley cashes in on Barton and Jose Enrique too, with the club very much looking like taking backwards steps rather than building on the achievements of last season.

No matter of who you believe initiated Nolan’s transfer, the bigger picture is Newcastle continue to be under the power of Ashley, and until that changes, expect matters to worsen before they improve.

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  • Goal Mouth

    Don’t listen to the agenda ridden ramblings of that divvy wraith.
    Same old trash from him.
    Conspiracy theories, supposition, assumption, & pet gripes.

    Kev wanted 3 years tagging onto his current (2 years still to run contract) by which time he’ll be 33/34, who’s being unreasonable?

    Get the facts straight wraith!
    That should be his new strap line.

  • SP

    There are only 2 ways this can go.

    1- Ashley replaces older, highly paid members of squad with younger, better players.
    2-Ashley sells players, and brings in cheap players on cheap wages, hoping that will be enough to bring the wage bill down, and keep NUFC in the Premiership.

    My gut feeling is that we won’t see any quality arriving. Less Waitrose, more Lidl.

    Hopefully I’m proven wrong, but a fat leopard never changes its spots. The only way is to drive Ashley out by hitting him in the wallet.
    Won’t work though as the fans want to get behind the team..blah blah blah.
    This sad saga could go on for years… 🙁

  • Paul Lamb

    Come on everyone. Lets be honest with new people coming in, Is Nolan gonna get into the starting line up. The answer to that question is “NO”.

    Even if nobody else joins the Toon before the start of the season, he still is’nt gonna get a game in his position. It’s now gonna be taken by Ben Arfa. He cant move into the centre of midfield as Tiote and Cabaye are gonna be there.

    He wanted a 5 year deal at 55k a week. Well a club in financial turmoil and in the championship are gonna give him it.

    Don’t get me wrong I liked the man he scored some important goals, a hatrick against the sworn enemy is great. However I have never seen a player give the ball away more than he does. I honestly believe Cabaye is 100% better player than Nolan. I am suprised no premiership side has not been in for him. Maybe for the wages he wants.

    Anyway thanks for the last 2 seasons, You have been a credit to the black and white stripes.

  • Steve

    For all the grief Ashley gets, and much of it deservedly so given his treatment of Keegan and Shearer for instance, he has looked at the business side of football and figured out that buying hungry younger players with a potential resale value is good sense. In addition, clubs like Man United and Arsenal, (on whom our business model is based allegedly), don’t do more than one year extensions for players aged 30 and older. Nolan has dropped a division for 13 grand more per week to reunite with a former mentor (even though I think BFS is useless), so I think everyone wins here. We got the best of Nolan, 4.1m for a guy who is 29 very soon, and I don’t see what the fuss is about. Everyone is forgetting about Gosling as well, assuming he can recover from his injuries.

  • Adam

    Whilst I sympathise with Steve Wraith, I can see why Nolan has teamed up with his old boss at Upton Park.

    The opportunity to work with Big Sam is a factor, plus if he is unhappy with what’s going on there and no other Premiership sides wanted him then who can blame him.

    Steve does have a point – Newcastle United will not be taken seriously until they offload Ashley, Lambs ass etc.

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