Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Magpies Are Making the Most of Life in Championship

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Magpies Are Making the Most of Life in Championship

Article excerpt

Byline: LEERYDER Analysing life in Black & White

WHEN Newcastle United were relegated back in May there were taunts from rival fans which went along the lines of: "Enjoy the Championship then!" or "Enjoy playing Brentford" and "Enjoy your trip to Barnsley!" Well, 11 games into the season it's safe to say the Toon Army are doing exactly that.

Newcastle fans aren't moaning about their stay in the division and are treating it with full respect.

Of course most United fans would rather be back in the Premier League and in reality, a club the size of Newcastle should never have been allowed to have slipped out of the top flight of English football in the way it did.

Sent down by bitter rivals Sunderland on live TV with cameras at the ready on Tyneside for instant reaction, that cold night on May 11 was a tough one as Newcastle fans and players could only watch on helplessly as a pathetic Everton side rolled over to allow the Wearsiders to stay up.

The damage had already been done long before that night but since Rafa Benitez decided to remain at St James' Park the club has tried to get on with life and make a decent fist of a season in the Championship.

And you know what? Newcastle really are making the most of their stay in the division.

Fans have not stayed away or waited to see what happens.

Instead, they have sold out most games home and away, and this week will be yet another great example of their fantastic unconditional support.

The home game with Brentford may not be the biggest fixture supporters have ever witnessed at St James' but it will still be played in front of a 50,000-plus crowd.

As for enjoying the joys of Barnsley away on a Tuesday night? Well, the full allocation of 5,900 tickets have gone like hot cakes while there's even a beam-back of the game at Oakwell with the club handing out 1,900 free tickets at the stadium's Terrace and Nine bars for those who missed out on fixtures.

By the end of next week, the home game with Ipswich should have also attracted another 50,000-plus crowd to SJP.

If Newcastle fans have approached the Championship with a positive attitude this season, then fair play to this season's opponents. …

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