The Groundsman’s Shed


King Kev’s Soccer Circus by groundsman
February 19, 2008, 8:54 am
Filed under: Barnsley, Newcastle

He would love it if you bought him. Love it.
Want to own a football team? For about 300 million large, you could get your own Newcastle replica shirt with “King Kev” on the back. Apparently the current owner, American money-man Mike Ashley, is looking to unload the club on someone else with presumably deeper pockets.

Why is this demi-interesting news?

Ashley’s only had the lead ownership role at the Tyneside since last summer. According to some (quite possibly incorrect) sources, he has been looking for new owners since he bought out the Hall family. So- is his role that of a “caretaker owner”? If so, why on Earth would you bother to sack Sam Allardyce and make sweeping staff structural changes? The Allardyce answer may be fairly obvious (the team was terrible under his tutelage), but the other changes are not.

The rumour mill is clanking out news that the 300 million pound buyout proposal was made to Dubai Investment Capital– and apparently they aren’t biting at the chance to take over the debts of a club edging closer and closer to the relegation zone, so this news could all be “f’nowt”. It is just another small chapter in the seemingly never ending cycle of strange happenings at St. James’ Park.

Grounds Clippings:

-The Guardian, Fabio Capello on the upcoming Arsenal v. Milan match

“Since the draw I’ve felt that Milan could not have got a worse proposition than Arsenal. I believe that at this time Arsenal are one of the very top teams in Europe. They combine great quality with great speed. They will be very different from the team beaten 4-0 at Old Trafford at the weekend.”Both Arsenal and Milan play a very technical game, centred on possession and team organisation. As soon as Arsenal win the ball back they dash forward with great passing and deft touches. But Milan too can play great possession and it will be a massive match.”

-Chelsea big wigs may have to bring their own prawn sandwiches- the club will be going to Barnsley’s home field for the FA quarterfinal match up in March. As I’ve mentioned in a previous entry, Barnsley really aren’t the “poor farmboys playing for pride” that everyone wants them to be. Take a look at their website, for crying out loud. They have a proper money grabbing scheme going on with their “Barnsley World” subscription fees, and their replica kits are currently LESS expensive than those offered on the Chelsea FC website. You want to see a real lower league club?

-The people have officially spoken! Today, the fans will officially take over Ebbsfleet United. We’ll see how this historical bid turns out. If it doesn’t crash and burn quickly, this groundskeeper may just fork over 35 quid- just to have something to brag about down the pub.

– Young, talented MLS players are leaving the league for a chance to play in full stadiums, for “real” pro athlete wages- all of which just so happen to be abroad. The fans and journos have been saying this would happen, and every now and then, someone writes about it. Article summary: The MLS is seen as an amatuer leage around the world- and amongst some of it’s players, it’s merely a training ground. We know, we know. Now we just need for something to be done about it.

-Someday, everyone could live like the groundsmen of old! Yes, one day you actually live at your favorite football ground without fears of being docked for tresspassing. Take a look at some of these “futuristic” football proposals, brought to you by Orange, and commented upon by Tom of Pitch Invasion.

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