I am and always will be a one football team supporter. It's Sheffield United all the way for me, but when I was at University I did pay St James’ Park quite a few visits and loved the atmosphere at the home of the Toon army, it's nearly as good as Bramall Lane. Only joking!
I even went with Paul Gascoigne and some mates once which was quite an experience, but that story is for another time.Back to the club and I' convinced it was a good thing for Newcastle to spend a season in the Championship.
They needed time to pick themselves back up again and get things settled on and off the pitch. They seemed to have done that but now manager Chris Hughton is under-fire and has been given the dreaded 'vote of confidence' from the board.
The bookies are convinced his days are numbered at the club and the media have gone all out to push the idea. It actually makes you wonder where the story has come from - journalists, bookmakers, fans or the club?
Does the club react to the media thinking it's what the fans think? The situation has similarities with last week's blog regarding Wayne Rooney and the part the media plays in modern football. If it is the media then why would they stir things up? I’ll let you answer that!
It takes one little rumour or comment to spread like wild fire in the world of football. Every single whisper is heard in a village and football has become much the same.
I know quite a few Magpies and as far as I can gather, correct me if I'm wrong, Hughton is the manager and the fans want him to stay. I don't think it would do Mike Ashley any favours with the supporters, especially after the last debacle, to get rid of the current manager.
Hughton took them back where they belong at the first time of asking, the Premier League. With chaos off the pitch and without a big budget it was an impressive feat to say the least.
Newcastle are currently in 9th place and I don't think that's a bad effort at all. Don't forget the incredible 6-0 win over Aston Villa in August either.
On the other hand though I suppose just like any fans, the top four is what is wanted, and there is the feeling and this is not coming from me, that the supporters seem to think they have a right to be in the top four.
Newcastle is a massive club and with a massive club comes the same sized ego. It's almost the case that Hughton has to overachieve and exceed all expectations for him to keep his job.
Or maybe it's the fact that he is just not a big enough name. Does a big club, need a big name? What does a big name do differently anyway? Think back to the days of Arthur Cox and what he achieved.
With Hughton though it seems like he is always very willing to step down and step up at the board's say so. He has been caretaker manager quite a few times before, Tottenham Hotspur in 1998, assistant manager of Republic of Ireland and two seasons as Newcastle's caretaker. Would he again take a step back?
Does being in the Premier League mean that all of a sudden a manager who has done well in the Championship should watch his back if he's had no or little experience of the top flight?
The caretaker role is a curious idea. In Norway in 2006 when Rosenborg BK manager Per-Mathias Høgmo announced he was taking a leave of absence in mid-season, citing health concerns, the club were 10 points behind leaders SK Brann.
His assistant Knut Tørum was appointed on an interim basis, and proceeded to lead Rosenborg to a spectacular comeback, clinching the league title with one match to spare. Høgmo announced his resignation two days after Rosenborg won the title, and Tørum was named permanent manager after the season.
On the other hand, Tony Parkes was named caretaker manager of Blackburn Rovers on six separate occasions between 1986 and 2004, without ever being given the role in a full-time capacity. He is still yet to be given a full-time managerial role.
After coming off a 4-0 loss against Arsenal and with all the speculation over his job position, it will be interesting to see how Hughton deals with the derby at the weekend.
If they lose does that mean he goes? Or is the backing of club, for the first time in football history, a genuine backing rather than what we usually see?
To be honest I think it’s totally ridiculous that these rumours are rife. For that reason I hope Newcastle win against Sunderland on Sunday, not because I don't like Sunderland but just to put these rumours to bed once and for all.
I know it doesn't seem to matter nowadays but Hughton is a nice guy.
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