Picture the Scene. 23rd of March 2020. A Miami mansion over looking golden sanded beach and a glorious green golf course. The sun is shinning and it’s 25 degree’s at 10am. A round man lays half on, half off his sun lounger by the pool. Slazenger shorts. Tits out. Life’s good as he devours his 10th croissant of the morning. He mops up the crumbs that have escaped between chin numbers 5 and 6. His cell rings. Only fools and horses sound track. FACK SAKE.
‘Mike Ashley speaking’
‘Hi Boss, we have a bit of problem. The country has been put into lockdown and all non essential shops are to close immediately.’
‘Well, what the fack you ringing me for Sharon? We run an essential service. Tell them, directly from me, it’s business as usual.’
‘Goodbye Sharon’ Phone slams down.
Was this the final misjudged PR faux pas that ended Mike Ashley’s time as Newcastle United owner? Many public relations disasters had preceded him. Local misdemeanours brushed under the carpet. A bit spin here and there and, by all (off-shore) accounts he was used to the club’s fans, he could deal with them. Keegan. SportsDirectArena. In the end it goes away. It’s just the hard done to Geordies whinging again. Delusions of grandeur. Should be happy they’re in the Premier League. That nonsense. And after all, no publicity is bad publicity, stay relevant, trend and increase the amount of zero hour contracts while the zero’s on the end multiply. Ker-fucking-ching.
But, this time it was different. Many lives were being lost. Global Pandemic. Money irrelevant and the elite rendered useless. Retreat to the chalet. The ‘unskilled’ and low paid are now the only ones that can save the nation, save the world.
Nationwide outrage. He backtrack’s with the usual insincere apology but the damage is done. Even his journalist back slapping pals have turned on him, they have no choice. Mike Ashley is finally exposed, baring all. Stripped of his reduced Kangol, Karrimor and Dunlop and left butt naked in the window of his Oxford Street marquee store. Closing down sale.
With the global economy now in tatters, not least the retail section maybe Mike Ashley thought it’s time to finally cash in the chips. After all he’s had a monumental cup run of scraping by year on year without actually getting anywhere near silverware. 300 million would represent a good return on his initial outlay, not to mention 13 years of free sports direct exposure to the far reaches of earth. Skimming of the top, creaming it in and investing the bare minimum. He’s had his cake, ate it and some. Huge calorific intake and it’s gone straight to the midriff.
Some Newcastle United fans say he saved the club. ‘We are debt free’ ‘we were heading for administration.’ Wrong. Loaning the club money repayable only to him is still debt. But hey-ho at least it was interest free eh? Nothing is free in Mike Ashley’s world.
If or when this take over goes through fans will celebrate with cans. Newcastle United are set to be rich beyond their wildest dreams and, if what is written is true, the new owners are going to invest heavily and take the club to the very top or at least give it go and that’s what important, giving fans the hope that things could get better.
Careful what you wish for will no doubt be the cry but could it be any worse than the ‘that’ll do’ garbage long sufferers have had to endure on and off the pitch? Doubt that very much.