In these bleak days (weeks, months, years, decades …) of Mike Ashley’s reign, I increasingly dream of the times we lived through when Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson were at Newcastle United.
No surprise, because in my time supporting NUFC back to the 1970s, pretty much all of my best fan moments were linked to either of these two.
They had great supporting cast of course, BUT without Sir Bobby Robson and Kevin Keegan, those good times of the past would never have seen the same highs in terms of the quality of football and the sheer excitement they generated.
Looking back on the accumulated times, we enjoyed the company of this duo …
August 1982 – May 1984
Kevin Keegan plays for Newcastle.
February 1992 – January 1997
Kevin Keegan is running Newcastle for the first time.
September 1999 – August 2004
Sir Bobby Robson heads Newcastle.
January 2008 – September 2008
Kevin Keegan is heading Newcastle for the second time.
When I was daydreaming again today, a terrible thought dawned on me …
I added these four Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson spells at the club and it came out 12 years 3 months.
Almost all of my happy memories of Newcastle United are in these periods, and for nearly five decades I have been an active supporter of our football club.
Then you have another statistic, for 14 years, 4 months and counting, Mike Ashley owns Newcastle United.
Can that really be true, all these happy, relatively happy times that I have spent as a fan have already been surpassed by the Mike Ashley years ???
How awful is that
The thing is, while I could easily give you 100 or more different happy memories of the time Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson were at St.
I know there was the slight overlap when Mike Ashley misled Kevin Keegan and put him in as manager for seven months and KK made it more bearable with better football and better results, which then raised hope for better … it became clear – Ashley had secretly put overall control of signings and everything else over to Dennis Wise.
Then of course we had the only decent season under Mike Ashley, fifth place in 2011/12, but this season too just ended as part of the big fat blob of general misery because it became pointless, a breakthrough season that was totally wasted there Mike Ashley refused to allow a penny in net spending on the NUFC squad in an attempt to establish Newcastle as a top six team while competing in Europe. Instead, the refusal to build up in the next season almost ended in relegation, Newcastle only reached safety after winning the last away game (QPR) of the 2012/13 season.
Rafa Benitez has also given us self-respect and hope again, BUT that is certainly only worthless and part of the overall miserable existence under Mike Ashley, since Ashley had no intention of allowing it and pushing Rafa out of the way anyway.
Relegation battles, relegations, lazy football, garbage results, non-existent excitement, unsuspecting henchmen named managers / head coaches, st advertising for the multibillionaire’s act empire).
This is Mike Ashley’s 14 year and 4 month story at Newcastle United.
When he finally leaves … it will be like the clouds parting and seeing the sun again.
It’s horrific to think that a whole generation of Newcastle United fans grew up knowing nothing but that sunshine-free era of Mike Ashley.