Newcastle: Pardew Isn't The Problem, The Club Is Rotten To The Core
Last Monday night I sat and I watched Newcastle suffer a humiliating sixth straight defeat at the hands of Arsenal. The loss was our thirteenth defeat in seventeen games following the turn of the New Year. Yet rather than get angry, shout at the telly and get frustrated at the plight of my team, I was fairly placid. I was expecting nothing less, so why on earth would I get annoyed? If anything I was anticipating it to be even worse!
I sat there wondering what the point was. Again. I’ve gone past exasperation with Newcastle, I’ve gone past frustration, and quite frankly I’ve almost stopped caring. Why should I care? It’s quite clear that no one at the club does.
I have one remaining hope for this season - I now want my own team to finish outside the top ten in the league. I hope for this as nothing will gall me more than to see all involved in this shambles of a club, receive huge personal financial reward for this appalling waste of a season.
The club had a fantastic opportunity to create something good this season. After going along nicely, potentially on course for a European spot, the club then chose an altogether different route. In January they decided to sell their best player without reinvesting the money, essentially just calling it a day on this season.
I have even less hope for Newcastle looking beyond the current season. It’s been said many times that the owner is only concerned with the finances at the club, and this is quite clearly true. Year on year, he wants nothing more than to skim all the financial rewards that the Premier League gravy train has to offer, and if possible, cash in on any good players within his club.
The manager is nothing more than a gobsh*te chancer who couldn’t organise a p*ss up in a brewery. Since January, without Cabaye and Remy there to cover up his short comings, he has been shown for the clueless charlatan that his really is. He talks a good game but is hideously out of his depth. After three years of sound-bites and bullsh*t, the fans have finally realised that he is just another Ashley aficionado and defender of the regime.
Then there are the coaching staff, who are quite clearly pointless. Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher were literally lost for words by Newcastle’s shambolic defending on Monday; this wouldn’t be such an issue if it were on a one-off, but it’s been the same story for years. There seems to be an inherent, long-term problem with on-field organisation at the club, but no one seems to have the sense or the ability to address this.
I’d also call the general fitness of the squad into question. The players are completely knackered by eighty minutes, and both Ben Arfa and Yanga-Mbiwa are quite blatantly over-weight. In this modern world of sport-science and Prozone stats, what the hell is going on?
The long list of players who have actually got worse since joining the club is another issue. The aforementioned Ben Arfa and Yanga-Mibiwa are prime examples, but then there are the likes of Sissoko, Santon, Cisse, Marveaux, Anita, and Gosling; all of whom came with decent reputations and have got progressively worse since joining.
We bring players through the youth system like Haris Vukic, Sammy Ameobi and Adam Campbell, and then once they get within earshot of the first team they completely fall away and fail to make the grade. This lack of development has to be down to management and coaching, there are far too many examples for it all to be coincidental.
What goes on behind the scenes at Newcastle is beyond me, but we all know that Mike Ashley scrimps and saves every penny he can at the club. We also know that Pardew is only in position thanks to his willingness to tow the party line rather than for his ability. It is now becoming clear that the coaching staff are also not in position for their abilities either. The whole shoddy organisation just reeks of penny-pinching and jobs for the boys.
The players are also not without blame. They may be a disorganised mess, but they could still show some fight and some heart whilst on the pitch. It’s quite clear that most don’t really care and are desperate for a move away from Stalag St. James’.
In all fairness, who really can blame them? The club has no ambition whatsoever, so what motivation could they possibly have? To me it seems that the players now have developed the same attitude as many fans – basically questioning what the point is anymore.
I have no doubt that new players will be bought in this summer - they have to be to replace the ones who have now given up on the club and want out. Money will be spent because Mike won’t want to risk getting relegated again. These players will of course be well scouted and signed purely with the intention of selling on for profit in a couple of years’ time, and the whole cycle will start again.
We as fans can shout for Pardew to go all we want, I really don’t see it making a great deal of difference. It will be a short-term solution for a long-term problem. If he goes another out-of-work desperado like Alan Curbishley or Joe Kinnear will replace him. Those who think that decent managers like Moyes or Pochettino would touch us with a bargepole are living on planet cuckoo land.
The club is rotten to its very core. The owner, chief executive, manager, coaches and players alike have no desire to make our club great. Their motivations vary from financial reward, to keeping themselves in a job, to just getting the hell out of this mess. None share the desires and the hopes of those who made that journey to the Emirates on Monday night.
Until the powers that be do share the fan’s desire, then we are doomed to carry on in this heinous and shameful fashion. Let’s just hope that when that day finally does arrive Mr Ashley hasn’t worn all the passion out of us fans, as he has done with his players.
Follow Jonny on Twitter, @Jonnyanderson11