Et tu, Bruté?

Posted on June 8th, 2009 | 30 Comments |

caesar Scene 1: Rome 44B.C. Julius Caesar was fighting off an attack by a murderous group of Senators – “Et tu, Bruté?” (meaning “and you Brutus?”) were the words uttered by Caesar to his closest friend Marcus Brutus – when Caesar saw that he too was involved with the murderous group. Caesar lost his will to fight back on seeing the betrayal and allowed the Mob to cut him and kill him. It was the ultimate betrayal by a man who Caesar had loved as a brother.

Scene 2: Newcastle 2007

Mike Ashley buys Newcastle and appoints Dennis Wise as a club Director: Murmurs of dissatisfaction spread throughout the city. Mike clears off the clubs debts, buying Newcastle cost him 250million pounds.

Scene 3: Newcastle 2008

Mike Ashley sacks the unpopular Sam Allardyce and attempts to gain favour with the local fans by appointing Kevin Keegan as manager. Then the world economy collapses, Ashley can not afford or chooses not to spend the level of cash Keegan wanted. Kevin Keegan walks out of Newcastle, the fans rally to Keegan’s side and rampage against the owner, the events are played out all around the world to see. Newcastle gains the reputation of being the poison chalice, some fans are labelled as unmanageable, insatiable – worse than that uncontrollable in such circumstances.

Scene 4: Newcastle 2009

Newcastle United appoint Alan Shearer to manage the club for the last games of the season to avert relegation. Shearer was probably the only man that could unite the boardroom and fans at that time. The Club are relegated, calls for Shearer to be the only acceptable manager echo around the city, Ashley meets Alan Shearer to discuss progression, Ashley decides he can no longer own the club and in his, the fans and clubs best interest he should sell.

Scene 5 June to July 2009.

New buyers are circling the club, apparently 3 parties. 1 is rumoured to be from the region, 2 are not. 100million is confirmed as the asking price, meaning Ashley has in effect paid 150million of our debts from his own pocket, an unfathomable amount of money. New Owners will be appointed soon, their decision is “Who will be our manager”

I do not use these words lightly. Newcastle fans by their own actions post KK walkout may have sealed Alan Shearers fate as much as Marcus Brutus actions condemned Julius Casar 2000 years ago. Their actions may well lead any new buyer to form the view that Shearer is simply too dangerous a manager to appoint, that the club is too volatile with him in charge, that he would be unsackable, hold all of the power – and ultimately they could not control the very thing they had bought, and if they cant control – whats the point of buying it – as an angry mob would need to be fed – but Shearer is the only food that would satisfy their desire – much like the days of the Caesars.

The new buyers only choice may be to appoint a new independent manager of their own from day 1. That way they will control their own club, their own investment, their own destiny.

I ask the question – have the Mob of Newcastle betrayed Newcastle United by acting without thought and costing the region the very thing he and they covet most?

NUFCBlog Author: Stardust Stardust has written 15 articles on this blog.

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30 Responses

  1. “I ask the question – have the Mob of Newcastle betrayed Newcastle United by acting without thought and costing the region the very thing he and they covet most?”


    Phew, lucky for you I’m here because I can answer that question for you and take a weight off your mind.

    The answer is in fact no.

    A new owner will most likely look at the fans’ reaction to the Keegangate affair and see the potential. They will see passionate fans – a passion that will put bums on seats in SJP, even while they’re in the fizzy.

    They will know they’re taking over from a buffoon who, although intending well and doing the right thing by trying to clear the debts, didn’t really have a clue what he was doing either when he employed Keegan or let him go and who thought ‘communication’ is spelt ‘keep-my-head-down’.

    They’ll know too that they’re tough enough to front out the fans if it necessary, pursue the longer-term aims and make things right through their actions rather than looking for the first bus out of town if things get a bit lively and someone spills their pint at the bar.

    They’ll do a due diligence and know what they’re getting into when they buy the football club and, if they don’t have experience of running one themselves, they’ll employ someone who can.

    As to Shearer, they’ll employ him if they think that, all points considered, he’s right for the club. If they don’t think that they’ll employ another manager.

    Some of the fans may moan if Shearer doesn’t get the job but they’ll be confident enough to push on with their plan regardless, instead proving the wisdom of their decision by getting results on the pitch and winning promotion.

    That’s unless FFS comes back of course, in which case it’s anyone’s guess what’ll happen.

    If we get a good owner, things will be fine, regardless of the reactions of the fans, the press or anyone else.

    If we get a bad owner then history might repeat itself but that won’t be the fault of the fans, it’ll be the fault of the owner.

  2. Stardust – I wish you would give over with this ‘mob’ cr@p.

    Its a bit tiresome….move on. Even Ashley admits he was wrong and made ‘horrendous decisions’…yes he will pay the price for them……..but he derserves to. He may own the club, but he does not love it like we do – nor I’m sure does he feel the pain & humiliation like we do.

    I recall having a debate with you where you were saying basically that he would do the right thing in January to protect his investment……well he didn’t and you shirked that argument, just like you are shirking it now. He has had many opportunities to make a difference & he has blown every single one.

    For Christ’s sake we are all totally gutted with where this club stands today. We all want the club to be run professionally.

    As for Shearer – you have a man waiting & ready to a job for a club which he loves & will give his all……..a chance for any owenr to immediately build rapport between the club & fans by appointing him, yet you look at the downside always…..blame the mob….

    If a new owner wants to appoint their own manager then so be it….

    But what happens in the meantime…..that is big issue.

    I’m bored with your blindness. The fans are the biggest asset – just treat us with respect & run the club properly….surely not too much to ask.

  3. Well said Nobby Long (2).

    Stardust, 99% of Ashley’s wounds are self inflicted. My latin is rusty and never was good so forgive me but as Big Al would say…..Vos es non iens sumo p**s ex is football stipes quod vos es non iens sumo p**s ex is urbssay.

  4. Nobby – I used the term Mob as it started in Rome.

    Either way – posts and threads are there to start debate.

    Hugh you make a good argument, it’ll be interesting to watch the developments, I have spent a lot of time with these type of people, and they protect their downside at all costs, they remove all risk and while I recognise the strength and weakness of the club being its fans passion, if it were myself buying the club – and for the facts Shearer is unproven, I wouldn’t appoint him.

    If however I was Mike Ashley I would have.

  5. If it was my club, whether or not I appointed Shearer would depend on what was in his plan to rebuild the club.

    If his plan agreed with my objectives then I probably would appoint him because my gut instinct is that he’ll be okay as a manager and he’s a draw for the fans while we’re in the fizzy.

    I’d give him 3 years, with a general aim of 1 season to build and train his squad, 1 season to get promotion and 1 season to be free of a relegation fight in the PL.

    If he managed that, I’d sign him up for another 3 years.

    If his plan didn’t agree with mine though, he wouldn’t get the job.

  6. Your articles are getting tiresome Stardust.

    It appears that your using this blog to push your pro Ashley/anti mob agenda.

    Word of warning- People will bore of it and blog that has had such a promising start will start to go down hill.

    As for future ownership, they will only be interested in making money in the long term and they will have to decide if they think appointing Shearer is right or wrong.

    They would be stupid to make any decision without consulting somebody who actually knows about football.

    Shearer has certainly impressed alot of football people in he last 8 weeks and it remains to be seen who the new owners listen to- Hopefully not Denis Wise or Tony Jiminez!

  7. Stardust, I’ve never bought into this “the Mob” thing you have going. It was a one off protest at the Hull game, it’s not like every game was proceeded by the bad spelling bed sheet brigade.
    Ultimately the fans cannot dictate what happens with the club on or off the pitch. The board can take stock of the feelings of the fans and then decide if the best direction to go in is the way the fans are demanding, but ultimately they can choose to ignore it. There is a delicate balance to take and Ashley just gave into every whim of the fans. We all like to think we know what is best for the club, but fans opinion is often formed out of nothing but a gut feeling and the passion they feel for the club.

  8. Stuart “Word of warning- People will bore of it and blog that has had such a promising start will start to go down hill.”

    Read the article again – its hasn’t got an agenda to it – it simply puts in from an investment view – an area where I have great experience – and I have intermingled that with the events of 2 years – and put a twist on it for this blog in our evolving style.

    So before you start on your misplaced “warnings” I simply ask to read the thread and consider it. Its not an agenda – it is one informed view of the thought process of those who will be looking at us right now.

    Hugh is right and thinks as they do – but as Hugh knows those thoughts and decisions are subjective to himself, or myself and therefore an investor.

  9. Stardust

    If the investors think that Shearer will make the club better and more profitable they’ll employ him.

    I’m sure they would take advice from football people on this matter. I mean there aren’t any stupid billionaires are there?

    Well we mananged to find one!

  10. Micky Toon

    The Mob of course was a label. When I have used the word, I can not speak for others, I was referring to a collective mindset held onto by a significant group of our fans that pervaded every ounce of energy around the club and(in my opinion) was a destructive force last year. I lost count of the countless twisting and whining I heard in the bars before, during and after the games ( I do understand their were many factors contributing to that)

    However we can only be responsible for ourselves in any walk of life, so when any individual fan stopped supporting 100% – and chose to be negative as opposed to supporting (their only role) a percentage of responsibility – of the outcome from their actions (however small or significant you choose to place on it) does exist.

  11. I don’t have much opportunity for waffle this afternoon but I agree more or less with Hugh, Nobby, Stuart and MT. No surprise there then….

  12. There is also some confusion as to the debt the club is carrying.

    Is Ashley really writing off the £100m he put in to pay debts?

    That hasn’t been made very clear. Sale price of £100m yes, but will the new owners be saddled with the debt Ashley paid off?

    Wait and see I presume. If nobody comes up with the goods I guess we’ll know.

  13. Stuart – From what I’ve read on the BBC website it was stated that the £100,000,000 was an “all in price”. There would be nothing else to pay. You had over a big holdall full of used fivers and you get NUFC in return.

  14. Stardust –

    ” I used the term Mob as it started in Rome.”

    who are you trying to kid???

  15. ” I used the term Mob as it started in Rome.”

    Well in ancient Rome, it meant a large group of troublemakers from the Plebian class. Alone, they were almost powerless; but as a group they were rightly feared by the ‘higher’ Equestrian and Senatorial classes.

  16. Nobby – when I started using it on Eds blog it was for the same reason, at times I also described how the “Mob” would enjoy and revel in terrible events – yet the people involved couldn’t see how bad it was as they were members – e.g. the Roman crowds who used to gather and marvel and applaud at men being killed in front of their eyes for their entertainment.

    Others also stated Hitler and the Nazi’s etc.

  17. Imagine if I had used Plebs instead Worky – the Mob would have been after me in their entirety.

    Same origin, but Mob does sum up the situation. Folks are over touchy at times.

  18. But what we all know and surely you do deep down, is that nobody enjoyed the protests other than the minority of radgies? And like MT said earlier it was an isolated event. Everything else that has been said since, particularly by these lads is justifiable and spot-on in my opinion other than perhaps NUSC. I often just think you’ve gone to the extreme in your support of Ashley and mocking of those you see as his detractors, almost for the sake of it.

  19. Stardust: “However we can only be responsible for ourselves in any walk of life, so when any individual fan stopped supporting 100% – and chose to be negative as opposed to supporting (their only role)”

    Who defines supporting as the *only* role of the fans?

  20. Stardust

    If you wish to keep to the ‘Roman’ theme to this blog – may I suggest Nero fiddling whilst Rome burns as being far more appropriate.

  21. Not sure how a fans role can be classified any differently Hugh.

    BBM – I disagree it was a one off event, the anti-Ashley campaign was sustained throughout the season. It was on everyones lips every time I was near a fan every game all year, that negativity feeds through slowly and creeps into all aspects of the club.

    You only have to head outside the region to see the perception we have created – not from one event but from a few years – but this year has seen a new level of that mentality.

    This thread was not a campaign, was not a political point, it was stating maybe a view that some people dont see of themselves from an objective point of view.

    Well BBM – if I see it, and as I have said many of my friends and associates see it, then people who will be looking to invest might see it too.

    Hugh alluded to the subjectivity of view, and it will depend on who takes over, but the reality is – in my opinion – that the “Mob” may well have cost themselves of their choice of manager because of their conduct in the past – actions and consequence and all that.

    Contrary to your view, I am an absolute realist, I understand the best thing now is to sell the club ASAP, and for Ashley to head out of town, the article was just to head down a line that maybe some hadnt considered.

    Is this blog not meant to be expansive?

  22. BBM – lol

    By the way – “I often just think you’ve gone to the extreme in your support of Ashley and mocking of those you see as his detractors, almost for the sake of it.”

    I have been polite as the queens butler on this blog thank you very much kind sir

  23. Stardust, I agree that the major role of fans is to support but I don’t think that precludes them having opinions on the club. I don’t think it precludes them expressing those opinions loudly and forcefully either, particularly if they feel it’s in the best interests of the club to do so.

    Fans are people and people are not usually happy with being given prescribed patterns of behaviour they must follow.

    I think that’s exactly as is it should be. Individual fans are free to decide whether to kick up a fuss or not.

    It’s up to the club to decide whether that fuss merits consideration in relation to its long-term plans.

    Stardust said: “Is this blog not meant to be expansive?”

    Yes. I don’t see anything wrong with contentious articles like this.

  24. Stardust

    What about Man U fans when the Glazers bought the club?

    They demonstratd in their thousands,(they are the mob in your eyes)boycotted the club and even started their own bloody club!

    I don’t recall this having a negative effect on the club. In fact I think they went on to win three league titles on the bounce and a Champions League.

    So your theory that ‘the mob’ helped reduce this club to a pile of rubble in the Championship really has no substance!

    Comes back to the common sense theory really- Good players make a good team and bad players make a bad team. Pretty simple.

    Supporters weren’t buying the ridiculously poor players!

  25. Stuart – this is away from my usual fans are to blame stuff, thats for eds blog.

    I am simply saying that their demo’s may have cost them their appointment of Shearer. no more no less.

  26. Stardust

    I do have to say that the coverage of us over the country just isn’t there.

    I have a lot of friends all over the country and some of them didn’t even know there were any protests so to suggest that someone in the Middle East seen it could well be stretching it a little!

  27. What protests !!!
    Every supporter in the middle East is well aware of Newcastles positives and negatives. The coverage of the premier league in this region is far superior to that in any other part of the world, including our beloved homeland.