Can Mike Ashley Afford This Decision?

Chris Hughton not yet been given new contractThere has been speculation surrounding the future of Chris Hughton recently, owing to the fact that he hasn’t been offered a new contract, with his present one terminating at the end of this season. Mike Ashley is the one who has the power to appreciate what Hughton has done by rewarding him with a signal of faith symbolised by a new contract. Conversely, Ashley could deem the present manager as not befitting the role due to certain results or inexperience within the Premiership as a manager.

Where does this speculation materialise itself from may we ask? The influencing factors would include a poor run of results at St. James’ Park, a few experienced managers being unemployed who could potentially act as persuasive musings and the patent fact mentioned earlier, that Hughton hasn’t been offered an extension to his current terms. Mike Ashley is apparently sitting tight and biding his time in order to further gauge the situation by observing what manifests itself over the coming week in terms of results. Suggestions are that if these results aren’t favourable then Hughton may be assessing the government’s new one payment benefit system more thoroughly.

It seems to me almost transparent, clear cut and without question that Newcastle, if Ashley was to sack Hughton, would be plunged into catastrophe and cause fans to amass, crying to the heavens for the dethroning of the current regime. To dissect the aforementioned criticisms of Newcastle is to start by stating that the poor home form has been counteracted by a good away form and in a season that sees Liverpool in the bottom three and Manchester United struggling against teams, it certainly puts matters into perspective. The various managers out of work if brought in would have their own style of play and need to destabilise the club in order to manifest their desired style. The final matter of Hughton not being rewarded with a new contract is a strange matter, for he was behind the promotion last season and has made a fairly strong start this campaign.
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The players have elicited their deposition publicly by reaffirming Hughton as the man they respect and wish to see lead the club forward. Hughton comes across to me as fastidious, hard-working and possessing frankness over matters; he has had little to work with in terms of financial resources but has made some quite astute signings in the forms of Cheik Tiote, Wayne Routledge, Sol Campbell, Mike Williamson and Danny Simpson. Hatem Ben Arfa was also one but owing to his incapacity we shan’t know his impact. The only poor signings were James Perch and Leon Best, but even the top managers with millions at their disposal make inadequate judgements. Even with the current squad Hughton has managed to curtail the majority of fiery temperaments and bring them into focus on football, producing performances even after controversial circumstances off the field (Andy Carroll’s adventures hopefully being the last).

Success is generally only attained via two paths, one is having a vast recourse to money to buy it and the other is through a long-term undertaking and coherence within the club. There can be a mixture of the two as neither is exclusive. But as Newcastle lack the first criteria, the only other option is to lay foundations and build upon that of which is already good or working. As Mike Ashley has never fully endeared himself to the clubs loyal and vast supporter base, with the latter holding him as an arriviste, he may want to ensure stability at the club, which he has claimed to be doing. Then why not reinforce that image by extending the hand to Hughton with contract ready to sign?

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