In an exclusive interview with Football FanCast, Rob Lee, who scored 34 Premier League goals during his career, believes Newcastle United fans are wild but in a positive way because they love their club no matter what.
It comes after Graeme Souness said Newcastle fans were “wild” and “demand success”, and that becoming the manager on Tyneside would send you to the “managerial graveyard”. However, Lee knows the problems are out of every manager’s control.
Mike Ashley is currently onto his ninth permanent manager since buying the club in 2007, overseeing two relegations in that time, and Lee believes the owner is the main problem at Newcastle and nobody will succeed in the dugout until he sells the club.
He told Football FanCast:
“I think the fans are wild but in a good way because when you go to St James’ Park, certainly when I played there, they were fanatical. That’s what I love about Newcastle fans because they love their club. They go week-in-week-out even when things are not great, but everyone knows they hate the owner.
“It has been a sort of graveyard since Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson left because everybody since those two has failed. People say ‘why are they failing?’, and it’s because the club is not run well.
“Everyone can blame Steve and he’s got to take some of the blame because Newcastle shouldn’t be where they are. However, everyone knows who the main culprit is and the fact is we’ve got an owner that doesn’t really want to be there and he’s not going to put any money into the club.”
In the last transfer window, Mike Ashley sanctioned just one deal as Joe Willock arrived on deadline day on loan from Arsenal, despite Newcastle needing to improve in numerous areas of the pitch.
Newcastle have been involved in a long and drawn-out takeover saga involving Amanda Staveley and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which is due to go through arbitration in the coming months.