Date:Thursday August 26 2010
Why is it with Newcastle United that pride ALWAYS comes before a fall?
Two seasons ago it was the brilliant opening day draw with Man Utd followed by a great victory against a battling Bolton Wanderers side which preceeded a drubbing at Arsenal, Keegan storming out to a crowd of bedsheets and the wheels coming off again to send the wagon sliding all the way down to the Championship. Last season it was a great start to the season seeing us top of the league after the first 2 months of the season, which was followed by news that St. James' Park would be re-named the SportsDirect.com @ St James' Park. Baffling. Seems that Mike Ashley's PR team clearly are working more overtime than most of the 2,000 muppets nationwide working on his tills. And just when you thought he couldn't possibly do it a third year running - it happens again. A brilliant 6-0 victory at Europa League contenders Aston Villa is sharply followed by Mike Ashley submitting plans to add 6 giant advertising billboards to the side of St. James Park.
Not the type of signings we're crying out for, but in theory I'm not completely against the idea. I mean, if we're as skint as he keeps insisting we are - why not bring in some extra cash from adverts? I am However, 100% against Mike Ashley and knowing him as we all do, those 6 giant billboards will be for Sports Direct.com. Now it's important to stress that it's still unclear as to what this will be used for but if that is how it plays out, then you'd expect he would be paying advertising costs from Sports Direct, a completely seperate company, to Newcastle United FC, right? Well, no, because that just isn't how Mike Ashley does business.
Ever since that horrible sign went up above the heads of the Gallowgate fans, we've hardly seen a penny from the man let alone from Sports Direct and what annoys me most is, that for the cost of the 6 giant aluminum fascia signs we could sign a good championship left-back! It's clear that what's more important to Ashley is advertising a completely seperate company to make a higher profit rather than strengthening a team which a region depends on. It begs the question what will be next? Sports Direct sponsors on the shirts? or maybe rename the team to 'Newcastle Sports Direct United Football Club'? Either way, It's becoming more and more clear that the longer Mike Ashley remains at the helm, the longer he will continue to exploit any avenue he can to get more and more out of this club for himself while he continues to put the feelings, needs and opinions of loyal fans at the bottom of his list.
Malcolm from NUST, has already gone on record with his thoughts on the matter claiming the ground 'spiritually, morally, ethically and historically' belongs to the fans, and that it would desecrate a public icon. There's not many things that I agree with NUST on, but this is definitely one of them. Something needs to be done about this and I hope the councillors that I elected will do act quickly to stop him from spoiling one of the greatest landmarks in the North-East of England.
The planning permission application is online at the following address http://planningapplications.newcastle.gov.uk/online-applications/ap... For all fans or concerned citizens that wish to go on record with their feelings on the matter, you can register your comments and complaints here.
Date:Thursday August 26 2010
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