The summer started with so much optimism. A brighter dawn was shining on Tyneside, then the black clouds rolled in and it was all over. A sense of acceptance waved o ver the Geordie nation. This was our lot, we aren’t meant to have good things, there was going to be no saviour this day.
So we turned our attention to transfers, and lets be honest our hopes were set low. Paper after paper reporting we had next to nothing to spend, free transfers and loans were to be the height in which we would reach. The clouds were getting darker. Optimism became a fantasy, a word that had no true meaning when it came to Newcastle United. The dark times would continue.
The dark spectre that is Mike Ashley would loom over St James’ Park, this was our future. The divide between club and city seemed to be getting wider, relegation loomed, fans were ready to walk away, what was the point anymore. Year after year of thinking, this could be it, this could be when we do something. A feeling that lasts days at most, then the transfer rumours start taking shape.
We laughed them away, we won’t go after these players, they will cost actual money, Mike can’t sell them on at a profit, look at their age! Oh Jeff Hendrick has signed on a free, that seems about right! Matty Longstaff has signed a new contract, ok, but “its like a new signing!” Mediocracy seemed a distant goal.
You would look at the players we were linked with, and just laugh it of! You would sit asking right, thats first choice, so whose the fifth choice, we’ll probably get them. The club were reverting to type, and the expectations of the fan base were sinking with them.
But as is always the case with Newcastle, they are a conundrum wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a “what the fuck” is happening!
That was certainly the case this weekend. Last week when Villa were reported to put a bid in for Callum Wilson, there was a resignation among the fan base, right he isn’t coming here! Can’t even compete with Villa! Whats the point! Talk of Ryan Fraser, he’ll go elsewhere, no point getting excited about him! Jamal Lewis, we can’t can we, nah we can’t. None of this makes sense, we won’t meet the fee’s. I was even working out how little we would have to pay for Wilson if Ritchie was apart of the deal. Then it was the wages, we won’t pay the wages. Players are lucky to get a pack of tabs, a pic a’ mix and a large Sports Direct mug.
The Saturday came! what would follow would just baffle everyone! The shock waves went through the Newcastle fanbase, none of it made sense.
News was seeping through, we had a £20m bid accepted for Wilson, Fraser has agreed to sign, we had met the asking price for Lewis! Newcastle were actually bidding the asking price for their TOP targets! Players were choosing to come here, wages didn’t seem to be an issue! This felt like a break from the norm, the ages, the price, the look of an actual football club….This didn’t seem like Newcastle United, surely someone was having a laugh at our expense! We wouldn’t get the “over the line”, lets not get our hopes up!
We are the first to write of the club, that is our right, we live it, we breath it, we know what to expect! Yet as is always the case, the club have taken our expectations, and forced us to adjust. This time though, it wasn’t to lower them!
Monday came, Wilson signed, Fraser signed, Lewis was booked on a chopper to fly over early Tuesday morning to complete his medical! It is the only time in 13 years there has been a mix of disbelief and optimism on Tyneside. We were signing quality. We were signing British, we were spending money wisely.
That is just the tip of the iceberg! Although reports are saying we are happy with Wilson, we are still being linked to bringing another striker, ok a loan deal is being mooted, but who cares! Lewis is coming in as first choice left back, but Italian reports are still claiming we are close to signing Rogerio for £14m. Two left backs in one window? surely not!
Whether Rogerio is still an option once Lewis is announced, only the club will know! But if this window, and the past 13 years have taught us anything, is to try and not guess what the club will do next, we will inevitably be wrong.
The only thing that makes sense, is that Newcastle makes no sense at all!