It has been just over a week since we all saw the statement released that would come as a sucker punch to every Newcastle fan. The breaking news on Sky Sports News was the exact opposite to what we wanted, or indeed expected. This is of course the statement from the consortium made up of Saudi Arabia’s PIF, Amanda Staveley’s PCP Capital Partners, and the Reuben Brothers.
A fan base was in shock! We spent the next few days after trying to make sense of it all. More statements would follow that would cast further confusion over the matter. People were calling for answers, press were getting exclusives with members of the consortium, others were digging in the knife.
The original statement as well as an emotional interview from Amanda Staveley to the Athletic’s George Caulkin, all seemed to point in one direction….the length of time the Premier league took, without reaching a decision, but there was hope that if the takeover could be done, it would. In a break from type the club would also release a statement from Mike Ashley via Lee Charnley, stating the current owner was still committed to THIS deal, and ‘Never Say Never’.
This is the first time since Ashley took over the club, that we got the proof that he was a willing seller, wanted the club gone, and here we had a consortium that have interacted more with fans in a week than Ashley had in 13 years. This was the little nudge we needed, this was the final push to awaken the famous Toon Army!
Over the past 13 years there have been protest’s, fans groups have formed, all with the single aim to rid the club of Mike Ashley. This for whatever reason could not unite the fan base, everyone had their own opinions, it just didn’t seem to work. This time its different.
What we have seen is the governing body of the league sit on their hands for 17 weeks, and for reasons only known to them refuse to give an answer one way or the other. There has been talk that other clubs have tried to get involved and stop the takeover from going through, namely Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur. Something was going on, and it had to be beat! Not just for the takeover, but for the loss of investment in our region, for the loss of investment in the academy that could help a high number of local youths, by giving them an education and first class coaching. The loss of investment in the Newcastle United Foundation, which through their ‘Be a Game Changer’ have help people throughput the region that suffer from mental health. This was it, time to unite, time to show the world…Don’t underestimate Geordies!
We needed answers! For the first time in a long time the Newcastle fan base was United! We weren’t going to take this lying down, we weren’t about to let the Premier League just sit on their hands, and not be held accountable for their actions. We were not just going to sit by, accept we were stuck with Ashley, and give a hearty thank you and a goodbye to the one consortium that gave us hope.
A petition was started (sign here) to ask for a independent investigation into the Premier League. Through the the help of the Newcastle United Supporters Trust, letters were sent to MP’s, not just in the North East, but the whole Nation, even drawing a response from the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, agreeing that the Premier league need to give answers!
This wasn’t, as some are suggesting, to get the takeover waved through (although that would be the ideal result from a personal perspective), this was to make a league that is supposed to look after all 20 member clubs, stop looking after TV rights partners and the ‘Top 6’, and have equal care for all their members. This need for transparency is to stop this happening to any other club. This is to make the authorities accountable for their actions, and to allow fans to hear why certain decisions are made.
For too long fans have been the last group of people considered in any decision regarding football. As we have seen from Project Restart, football is nothing without the fans, yet we are the ones overlooked time and time again!
What the Premier League and football in general didn’t count on, was Newcastle fans taking a stand and saying ‘enough is enough’. This is not a fight the Premier League expected to fight.
The petition is growing each day, and at time of writing was just shy of 98,000!
For too long we have been mocked and ignored by the national media! This time we won’t be, we can’t be! There is nothing better for a Newcastle fan than a united fanbase, on the flip side there is nothing scarier for everyone else than a determined, focused, together Geordie Nation. We will always defend our area and our club! However we are now defending the integrity of English top flight football!
You get the sense this takeover isn’t over, and the personal feeling I get at the minute this is the last big push to get some sort of dialogue from the League. This is not going away any time soon. And if any non-Newcastle fans happen to reading this, we have a chant…
“Newcastle United, We’ll never be defeated!”
But this is when the football community need to come together as…
“Football Fans United, We’ll Never Be Defeated!”
There is so much I have left out of this piece, but plenty of time for that!
The simple message is, if you haven’t already sign the petition, email your MP, join the Trust! We aren’t going anywhere! If the Premier League didn’t want to give the consortium an answer of their own back, we will make sure they do from our pressure!