Newcastle United exceeded expectations last season.
While many will point to the fact that PIF have invested at Newcastle, anyone who would have predicted Champions League qualification and a run to a first domestic cup final in over 20 years would surely have been doubted before a ball was kicked.
Eddie Howe’s side have made rapid progress for close to two years now but not everything is particularly easy because of the takeover.
Indeed, FFP constraints have proven to be a problem this summer, albeit the club have managed to make three first-team signings.
Now, CEO Darren Eales has spoken.
Darren Eales says Newcastle now have a job to do behind the scenes
Eales says the rapid-fire progress Howe has made on the pitch means the club have to work furiously to keep up off it.
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A new training ground has been discussed, while FFP problems linger as Newcastle try to build the kind of infrastructure many of their rivals in the upper echelons of the game boast.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Eales said: “Hats off to Eddie and the football team for jumping into 4th place spot — we are now working furiously in the background to keep up with them!
“He’s not making it easy for us, but it’s healthy competition — and that’s exactly what we want.”
Exciting to imagine what Newcastle can do going forward
Few would doubt the fact that Mike Ashley left the club at a low base.
Less than two years into the PIF era, its only natural that not everything will be up to speed off the pitch.
Still, if Newcastle can come this far on the pitch while dealing with that, it’s fascinating to imagine how high they can climb when off-field matters catch up.
The future is very, very bright for the club.