Newcastle… Same Old Story

by admin

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

Chris Hughton getting the sack? Despite the murmurings in the press in recent weeks that never made any sense, it should still come as a surprise that he got the boot to any rational being, let alone football follower. Hughton’s magnificent job had brought everything the Magpies wanted, the novelty of stability to St. James’ Park, a piece of token silverware and most importantly, back to the promised land and where they feel they belong, the Premiership. In fact, not only were they back, instead of struggling to acclimatise, they have spent large portions of this season operating in the top half of an excitably congested table, and have pulled off some impressive results against Arsenal and Chelsea, to name but a few. The toon also have a new local hero, and a man who looks to be quickly settling into the much vaunted no. 9 shirt in Andy Carroll. ‘Howay the lads’ probably hasn’t been sung with such gusto in the Premier League for a long time.

Much of the Kudos for this brilliant transformation has got to be down to the outrageously dignified Hughton, who has conducted himself impeccably at the helm, and is also clearly responsible for some of the best facets of Newcastle’s play this season. Namely, the maturing of Carroll (on the pitch), the signing of Cheik Tiote, and the flourishing and leadership of Kevin Nolan, who at one point this season was statistically the third best player in Europe after Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. So not bad at all. Even Joey Barton has been playing well… The thanks? An inexplicable sacking, and a complete lack of patience and respect. The stability that Newcastle fans had craved had been achieved, only for it to be shattered to pieces for no apparent reason. Hardly surprising that Mike Ashley is involved to some extent once again.

A man who seemingly derives pleasure from sabatoging, Ashley has never exactly come across as someone who conducts the clubs affairs with a degree of intelligence. From attempting to assimilate into the fanbase by downing pints of non alcoholic beer, and prancing around in a ‘King Kev’ jersey, not to mention the Dennis Wise madness, Ashley in many ways represents the idiocy of some owners perfectly. Owners who seem like the most illogical person in the ground have permeated the game in recent years. Quickly following suit have been rash and unjust sackings, with Jose Mourinho and Mark Hughes being prime examples. Ashley seems to have gone and contributing another masterstroke by committing arguably the most mind boggling of these by letting Hughton go. He may even had earned some respect from the fans had he given Hughton some time to recover from this brief blip in form, and guarantee precious Premiership stability, as I’m sure he was well on the way to achieving.

Perhaps it could have turned out to be more than a coincidence if Martin Jol ended up getting the job, and to be honest, I think he could have proven to be inspiring. However, it seems inevitable now that Alan Pardew is a shoo in. He is the man that represents the ‘experience’ Ashley sought. Of what, a relegation scrap? With Hughton, Newcastle were never going to be near such territory. If this happens, I’m sure many will be tearing their hair out in frustration, as Ashley, for some inane reason, is more than likely about to plunge the club back into more struggles. Like a functioning addict who has shown so much promise in terms of recovery, it seems Newcastle’s attachment to disorderly chaos is now going to lead to a relapse. Ashley’s meddling is symptomatic of a large problem of senseless chairmen interfering when unnecessary. If Newcastle’s form suffers, he will get a deserved comeuppance for parting with a stable and logical manager in Hughton. Its dismaying to see a good man go in such fashion, and indeed we are probably desensitised by such sackings these days.

I hope for Newcastle’s fans sake that their season doesn’t go into freefall, as they were in a quite content state and it certainly isn’t their doing. However, if it does, you know exactly who to blame. Ashley’s croneyism and lack of rationale is never far from an inquiry into Newcastle’s pitfalls…

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