Friday, December 24, 2010

Ashley Out

"I don't think you can afford to be bitter. It's a wonderful club and I had a fantastic time there over three years" - Chris Hughton.

With disheartening speed, the protests against Mike Ashley appear to have fizzled out again. Boycotts, walkouts and direct action at Sports Direct stores have all been mooted but, with minor exceptions, to next to no avail. Ultimately, as was the case in 2008 and 2009, too many supporters waited for others to act instead of themselves.

In the long-term, Ashley isn't likely to win - disillusionment with his running of the club, the continuing recession and, above all, public sector job losses will result in falling attendances, making it even more difficult for him to see a profitable return - but our football club will almost certainly lose. From Keegan to Kinnear, Shearer to Dennis Wise, a relegation season to the sacking of Chris Hughton, Ashley and Llambias have shown time and time again that they are inadequate to the task at hand. "I tried my best, but I accept that my best was woefully short," Ashley said in 2008. Nothing has changed to alter that view.

I can put things no better than the fan who contacted Sky Sports on the evening Hughton was dismissed. "Wanted: one owner with experience of running a football club."

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