As a life-long Newcastle fan, and season ticket holder for 40 years, I thought there was very little that could happen at the football club worse than I had already suffered through – I was wrong!
The current situation at St James’ Park is uglier than anything else that has happened at the club – and that includes the Alan Shearer situation in 2009.
The similarities to 2009 are quite similar in many ways, especially for anyone who recalls the words of former Newcastle player and coach, Paul Ferris, in the Daily Mirror ahead of the launch of his autobiography last year.
Despite relegation, the football club stated how much they wanted Shearer to stay on as manager – “110 per cent”, according to 2009’s Lee Charnley, Derek Llambias – just like they did with Rafa this year.
According to Ferris, Mike Ashley immediately told them he was selling the club – a decade later, similar managerial situation, similar Ashley selling stories.
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Ashley’s advisor at that time told him it may be easier to sell the club with a name like Shearer in the role – as we have heard about Rafa this summer.
They had initial talks, and everything seemed fine, until there was a stumbling block – just like now.
Then Shearer heard nothing more at all from Ashley or the club – something fans fear will be emulated with Rafa.
The big difference back then, however, was Ashley delivering a public apology to the fans. This year there has simply been a blanket ban on any statements at all.
Fans deserve answers before forking out for season tickets
With the amount of outstanding issues around the club, fans need answers before deciding whether or not to commit to buying a season ticket, which makes the ban of any comment seem astoundingly arrogant.
The football club, the fans and the media are all in limbo. Questions need answering, yet the silence remains.
It is what sets this circus apart from anything else I have endured as a fan before.
Never before have I had a feeling of such utter disillusionment about my football club.
If I go through the range of emotions I feel when I think about the current situation, none of them are positive: dejection; resentment; hopelessness; worry; embarrassment; I could go on.
Unless something remarkable happens on either, or both, of the manager and takeover fronts, it is hard to see just where the club can go from here.
Like most other fans, I will be keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for that miracle. The alternative is too distressing to contemplate.