Is Going Down The Best Thing For Newcastle?By: Rob | May 24th, 2009
My God, they’ve had a roller-coaster season. And today Newcastle United found themselves condemned to Championship football after losing to Aston Villa. Middlesbrough join the Toon in the second tier, and despite Hull and Sunderland both suffering final day defeats, it was enough to keep them in the top flight.
The turmoil at Newcastle this season has been well documented, by us and elsewhere. They kicked off the season looking quite good against Manchester United, but it didn’t last. After a row over transfers on deadline day, Kevin Keegan parted company with the club, and they promptly went on a slide under temporary manager Chris Hughton. They eventually replaced him with a foul-mouthed Joe Kinnear. He had to undergo heart surgery, and so was replaced first by Hughton again, and then by Alan Shearer.
The former Newcastle Number Nine couldn’t do enough to keep the club in the top flight though, with just one win in his tenure. In between all that, Mike Ashley fell out with the entire fanbase of the club, and tried to find someone to buy it from him. Honestly, if I’d made that up, you’d say I went too far.
So is Relegation actually the best thing for the club?
I think it is. A year relatively out of the spotlight will give them a chance to regroup, both behind the scenes and in the dressing room. Whether its Alan Shearer or Joe Kinnear or someone completely different sat on that Bench next season makes no difference, they’ll still have to rebuild the squad from scratch again, with several under performing big names (Hello Michael Owen, Fabricio Coloccini, Oba Martins, Jonás Gutiérrez) sure to get out at the first chance.
So any new manager can build the side that they want to build, instead of being lumbered with whats left. Newcastle should get a bit of money from the sale of the outgoing talent (with a couple of exceptions – Owen’s contract is up for example) that they can build a side that can confidently win the the Championship.
With any luck they can sort out what’s going on behind the scenes too, Mike Ashley can either stabalise the club, or get the hell rid of it. If he does go, Newcastle fans will hope that someone slightly less self-destructive comes in in his place.
It is a bad day on Tyneside, the end of an era that has bought us so many memorable moments, from Newcastle leading the title by 12 points, that 4-3, Keegan loving it and so many more. They can put the Keegan-era behind them now though (an era, that understandably they have often been looking back to since he first left) and concentrate on a brand new Newcastle for a brand new era.