There are few things in football that are more pleasurable to hear than a damn good booing, but you don’t hear enough of it these days. Too many football supporters are far too supine these days – they put up with whatever they’re given. There’s none of that going on at Newcastle United at the moment. They’re angry. There is an extent to which the whole situation there has spiralled out of control. Kevin Keegan’s record there wasn’t terribly good, so quite why Newcastle United supporters have decided to get quite so worked up about this is anybody’s guess.
Keegan was born in Scunthorpe rather than Newcastle, and didn’t sign for them until 1984 during the twilight of his playing career. The sum total of his “messiah” status upon Tyneside as a player was winning the Second Division in 1984. It’s easy to forget this, such is the hubris that surrounds Keegan’s relationship with Newcastle. You’d think that he was born on the centre circle at St James Park, but the truth of the matter was that until the Keegan PR machine got involved, he was more closely associated with Liverpool or even Southampton than he was with Newcastle United. You can’t help but think that the people of Scunthorope have been short changed.
Meanwhile, Mike Ashley continues to look for an exit strategy. He has been linked with Anil Ambani, an Indian telecommunications (you can probably guess the next word) billionaire. The asking price is said to be £250m, which would seem to indicate that Ashley thinks that Ambani should pay for all the transfer mistakes that have been made of the last couple of years, which is a novel way of approaching takeover talks. Ambani is said to be keen to return Keegan to the manager’s position, which would surely be the single worst managerial appointment of the season were it to come to pass. The likelihood remains high, however, that Gus Poyet, Dennis Wise’s former right hand man at Leeds United, will be installed as manager.
There are many things that football supporters could or should be protesting about at the moment, so it almost seems a shame that when an organised protest takes pace, it’s over something that is, in the overall scheme of things, comparatively trivial. The likely beneficiaries of all thi nonsense are likely to be Hull City, who are visiting St James Park to play a team whose morale is at absolute rock bottom. Still, at least they’re complaining about something, which is a start.