Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Mike Ashley Going Public Is Welcome but Long Overdue; Fans Have Waited Too Long for United Supremo to Speak out but It Can Herald Start of Better Days at Toon

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Mike Ashley Going Public Is Welcome but Long Overdue; Fans Have Waited Too Long for United Supremo to Speak out but It Can Herald Start of Better Days at Toon

Article excerpt

Byline: Mick QUINN

FOR as long as I have been writing this column I have been imploring Mike Ashley to speak to the Newcastle United supporters about what he is actually doing with their club.

Eight long years he has been on Tyneside now and for virtually all of it we have been left second-guessing him. He has done some mad, bad things in the name of Newcastle United and I have thought for a long time he owes the supporters some explanations - and some clarity on where the club is going.

Well, Sunday was a start. Now I did not buy all of it and I don't think the garden is suddenly rosey simply because he put himself in front of a microphone - but at least we have some idea of his thinking now.

I liked the fact he took the blame for what had gone on - but he could not really do anything else, could he? It was good to hear him talk up investment too, although the proof will be the quality of the line-up Newcastle send out on the first day of the new season.

Saying he would not sell until he won something felt like a win-win situation. Either we get rid of him one way or another or we win something - can you imagine that after everything we have been through with him? I was not convinced by him saying the head coach decision was totally down to the football board, though.

If that was the case, how do you explain Joe Kinnear getting a job a few years back? Make no mistake, he will have a say in that call. It is his business - you don't appoint a senior manager without him having a big say.

There was plenty to raise an eyebrow about and I think it is safe to say the jury is still out on Ashley and the way he runs Newcastle - to put it mildly.

I am not exactly holding my breath for Jurgen Klopp to walk through the door but this is not a week for Ashleybashing.

Not when he has done something we wanted him to do, anyway.

Let's hope his interview is the start of a new era because it has to be.

Sunday was a massive relief and the supporters helped to drag Newcastle over the line.

The fans fed the players and in turn their raised levels of effort gave the supporters something to cheer about.

That is how it should be at St James' Park - and the big question is why it has not been like that for so many weeks.

West Ham were poor but Newcastle bullied them and out-worked them.

You watched it and after the relief there was still a little bit of that anger they had not done it at any point since February.

However, let's be a little bit positive because it was a good day for the club and Jonas Gutierrez's goal and story was the highlight of the season.

I have always liked Gutierrez, who is my kind of player. He is a heart-and soul-type footballer who gives you everything and I did not ever really understand him being dropped after the Sunderland game. …

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