Former Newcastle United player Kevin Nolan tarnished his fan favourite reputation last week after a bizarre defence of Mike Ashley, but now supporters think they’ve finally spotted a motive.

In a radio interview with talkSPORT last Friday, Nolan lavished praise on the owner, enraging supporters who had previously revered the midfielder.

Nolan told the station: “You can’t fault Mike Ashley.

“He’s been able to finance the club and make sure everything is running smoothly.

“You go up there and it’s a fantastic club and what he’s done within the ground is fantastic.”

 (Photo by Andrew Vaughan – CameraSport via Getty Images)

At the time, Toon fans were convinced he must be after the vacant manager role.

It was too random and too convenient that the former Notts County manager was suddenly waving Ashley’s banner.

But the recent news that Sam Allardyce turned down the Newcastle job last week has also brought with it some revelations about Nolan.

Was Nolan in line for assistant role?

Kevin Nolan played under Allardyce at both Bolton and West Ham, and the Daily Mail reported that he would have been made Big Sam’s assistant at Newcastle had he not turned the job down.

(Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images)

This would explain Nolan’s sudden praise of Ashley, as last week he may well have been under the impression he was about to be working for him.

But now Big Sam is no longer in the running, it seems Nolan has ruined his reputation with fans for absolutely nothing.

They’re less confused now they understand his motivations, but that certainly hasn’t made them more forgiving.

Unfortunately for Nolan, he’ll now be added to the growing list of pundits and professionals written off by fans as an Ashley minion.

A fantastic reputation on Tyneside, all erased in the space of a fifteen minute interview.

 

(Photo by Ian Horrocks/nufc via Getty Images)

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