Newcastle United F.C.

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Newcastle United
Newcastle United Logo.svg
Full name Newcastle United Football Club
Nickname(s) The Magpies, The Toon, Geordies
Founded 9 December 1892; 122 years ago (1892)
Ground St James' Park
Ground Capacity 52,405[1]
Owner Mike Ashley
Managing Director Lee Charnley
Manager Alan Pardew
League Premier League
2013–14 Premier League, 10th
Website Club home page
Current season

Newcastle United Football Club (often abbreviated to NUFC) is an English professional association football club based in Newcastle upon Tyne. The club was founded in 1892, by the merger of Newcastle East End and Newcastle West End, and has played at its current home ground, St James' Park, since. The ground was developed into an all-seater stadium in the mid-1990s and now has a capacity of 52,405.[1][2] The club has been a member of the Premier League for all but two years of the competition's history, and has never dropped below English football's second tier since joining the Football League in 1893. In 2007, long term chairman and owner Sir John Hall sold his share in the club to Mike Ashley.

They have won four League Championship titles and six FA Cups, as well as the 1969 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup and the 2006 UEFA Intertoto Cup. Newcastle United has the ninth highest total of major honours won by an English club.[3] The club's most successful period was between 1904 and 1910, when they won an FA Cup and three of their First Division titles. The club is the twentieth richest club in the world in terms of annual revenue, generating €115.3m in 2012. Historically, Newcastle’s highest placing was fifth in the world.[4]

They have a fierce local rivalry with Sunderland, and the two clubs have engaged in the Tyne–Wear derby since 1898. The club's traditional kit colours are black and white striped shirts, black shorts and black socks. Their traditional crest takes elements of the city coat of arms, which features two seahorses.

History

Early history

A chart showing the progress of Newcastle United Football Club from its entry into the Football League in 1894 to 2013. Newcastle have won the league on 4 occasions.

The first record of football being played on Tyneside dates from 3 March 1877 at Elswick Rugby Club. Later that year, Newcastle's first football club, Tyne Association, was formed. The origins of Newcastle United Football Club itself can be traced back to the formation of a football club by the Stanley Cricket Club of Byker in November 1881. This team was renamed Newcastle East End F.C. in October 1882, to avoid confusion with the cricket club in Stanley, County Durham. Rosewood F.C. of Byker merged with Newcastle East End a short time later. In 1886, Newcastle East End moved from Byker to Heaton. In August 1882, Newcastle West End F.C. formed from West End Cricket Club, and in May 1886, the club moved into St James' Park.[5] The two clubs became rivals in the Northern League. In 1889, Newcastle East End became a professional team, before becoming a limited company the following March.[6] However on the other hand, Newcastle West End were in serious financial trouble and approached East End with a view to a take over. Newcastle West End were eventually dissolved, and a number of their players and backroom staff joined Newcastle East End, effectively merging the two clubs, with Newcastle East End taking over the lease on St James' Park in May 1892.[5]

With only one senior club in the city for fans to support, development of the club was much more rapid. Despite being refused entry to the Football League's First Division at the start of the 1892–93 season, they were invited to play in their new Second Division. However with no big names playing in the Second Division, they turned down the offer and remained in the Northern League, stating "gates would not meet the heavy expenses incurred for travelling".[5][6] In a bid to start drawing larger crowds, Newcastle East End decided to adopt a new name in recognition of the merger.[5] Suggested names included Newcastle F.C., Newcastle Rangers, Newcastle City and City of Newcastle, but Newcastle United was decided upon on 9 December 1892, to signify the unification of the two teams.[5][7] The name change was accepted by the Football Association on 22 December, but the club was not legally constituted as Newcastle United Football Club Co. Ltd. until 6 September 1895.[6] At the start of the 1893–94 season, Newcastle United were once again refused entry to the First Division and so joined the Second Division, along with Liverpool and Woolwich Arsenal.[5] They played their first competitive match in the division that September against Woolwich Arsenal, with a score of 2–2.[6]

Turnstile numbers were still low, and the incensed club published a statement stating, "The Newcastle public do not deserve to be catered for as far as professional football is concerned". However, eventually figures picked up by 1895–96, when 14,000 fans watched the team play Bury. That season Frank Watt became secretary of the club, and he was instrumental in promotion to the First Division for the 1898–99 season. However, they lost their first game 4–2 at home to Wolves and finished their first season in thirteenth place.[6]

Harry Hampton scores one of his two goals in the 1905 FA Cup final against Aston Villa

In 1903–04, the club built up a promising squad of players, and went on to dominate English football for almost a decade, the team known for their "artistic play, combining team-work and quick, short passing". Long after his retirement, Peter McWilliam, the team's defender at the time, said "The Newcastle team of the 1900s would give any modern side a two goal start and beat them, and further more, beat them at a trot." Newcastle United went on to win the League on three occasions during the 1900s; 1904–05, 1906–07 and 1908–09.[6][8] In 1904–05, they nearly did the double, losing to Aston Villa in the 1905 FA Cup Final. They were beaten again the following year by Everton in the 1906 FA Cup Final. They reached the final again in 1908 where they lost to Wolves. In 1908 the team suffered a record 9–1 home defeat to local rivals Sunderland in the league but still won that season's league title. They finally won the FA Cup in 1910 when they beat Barnsley in the final. They lost again the following year in the final against Bradford City.[6]

The team returned to the FA Cup final in 1924, in the second final held at the then new Wembley Stadium. They defeated Aston Villa, winning the club's second FA Cup.[6] Three years later they won the First Division championship a fourth time in 1926–27, with Hughie Gallacher, one of the most prolific goal scorers in the club's history, captaining the team. Other key players in this period were Neil Harris, Stan Seymour and Frank Hudspeth. In 1930, Newcastle United came close to relegation, and at the end of the season Gallacher left the club for Chelsea, and at the same time Andy Cunningham became the club's first team manager. In 1931–32, the club won the FA Cup a third time. However, a couple of years later, at the end of the 1933–34 season, the team were relegated to the Second Division after 35 seasons in the top. Cunningham left as manager and Tom Mather took over.[6]

The club found it difficult to adjust to the Second Division and were nearly further relegated in the 1937–38 season, when they were spared on goal averages. However, when World War II broke in 1939, Newcastle had a chance to regroup, and in the War period, they brought in Jackie Milburn, Tommy Walker and Bobby Cowell. They were finally promoted back to the First Division at the end of the 1947–48 season.[6] During the 1950s, Newcastle won the FA Cup trophy on three occasions within a five-year period, beating Blackpool in 1951, Arsenal in 1952, and Manchester City in 1955. However, after this last FA Cup victory the club fell back into decline and were relegated to the Second Division once again at the end of the 1960–61 season under the management of Charlie Mitten. Mitten left after one season in the Second Division and was replaced by former player Joe Harvey. Newcastle returned to the First Division at the end of the 1964–65 season after winning the Second Division title.[6] Under Harvey, the club qualified for European competition for the first time after a good run in the 1967–68 season and the following year won the 1969 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Final, triumphing 6–2 over two legs against Hungary's Újpest in the final.[6]

The Seventies and Eighties

Harvey bought striker Malcolm Macdonald in the summer of 1971, for a club record transfer fee of £180,000.[6][9] He was an impressive goal scorer, who led United's attack to Wembley in their 1974 FA Cup Final defeat at the hands of Liverpool.[6] The club also had back to back triumphs in the Texaco Cup in 1974 and 1975.[10] Harvey left the club in 1975, with Gordon Lee brought in to replace him. Lee took the team to the 1976 Football League Cup Final against Manchester City, but failed to bring the trophy back to Tyneside. However, he sold Macdonald to Arsenal at the end of the season, a decision of which Macdonald later said "I loved Newcastle, until Gordon Lee took over". Lee left for Everton in 1977, and was replaced by Richard Dinnis.[6]

United dropped once again to the Second Division at the end of the 1977–78 season. Dinnis was replaced by Bill McGarry, and then he was replaced by Arthur Cox. Cox steered Newcastle back to the First Division at the end of the 1983–84 season, with players such as Peter Beardsley, Chris Waddle, and ex-England captain Kevin Keegan the fulcrum of the team. However, with a lack of funds, Cox left for Derby County and Keegan retired. With managers such as Jack Charlton and then Willie McFaul, Newcastle remained in the top-flight, until key players such as Waddle, Beardsley and Paul Gascoigne were sold, and the team was relegated once more at in 1989. McFaul left the managerial post, and was replaced by Jim Smith. Smith left at the start of the 1991–92 season and the board appointed Osvaldo Ardiles his replacement.[6]

Rise to fame and title challenges

Sir John Hall became the club's chairman in 1992, and replaced Ardiles with Keegan, who managed to save the team from relegation to the Third Division. Keegan was given more money for players, and he brought in Rob Lee, Paul Bracewell and Barry Venison and the club won the then First Division Championship at the end of the 1992–93 season, earning promotion to the then new Premier League. At the end of the 1993–94 season, their first year back in the top flight they finished in third, their highest league finish since 1927.[6] The attacking philosophy of Keegan led to the team being labelled "The Entertainers" by Sky Sports.[11]

Keegan took Newcastle to two consecutive runners-up finishes in the league in 1995–96 and 1996–97, coming very close to winning the title in the former season. This success was in part due to the talent of players like David Ginola, Les Ferdinand and Alan Shearer, who was signed on 30 July 1996 for a then world record fee of £15 million.

Keegan left Newcastle in January 1997 and was replaced by Kenny Dalglish, however the club endured a largely unsuccessful season with a thirteenth place finish in the 1997–98 FA Premier League, failure to progress beyond the group stages of the 1997–98 UEFA Champions League despite beating Barcelona and group winners Dynamo Kiev at St James Park as well as coming from 2–0 down to draw 2–2 with Valery Lobanovsky's team in Ukraine and defeat in the 1998 FA Cup Final. Dalglish was replaced as manager early in the following season by Ruud Gullit.[12][13]

The club once again finished thirteenth in the league and lost the 1999 FA Cup Final. Gullit fell into disagreements with the squad and chairman Freddy Shepherd, and quit the club four games into the 1999–2000 season with the team bottom of the table to be replaced by Bobby Robson.[13][14] The club managed to reach an FA Cup Semi-final and to stay in the Premier League.

League success and Europe

A title challenge emerged during the 2001–02 season, and Newcastle's fourth place finish saw them qualify for the Champions League. The following season, Robson guided the team to another title challenge and finished third in the League, and the second group stage of the Champions League.[15] Newcastle finished fifth in the league at the end of the 2003–04 season, and exited the Champions League in the qualifying rounds, but despite this Robson was sacked in August 2004 following a series of disagreements with the club.[16][17]

Graeme Souness was brought in to manage by the start of the 2004–05 season. In the time he managed, he broke the club's transfer record by signing Michael Owen, however he was sacked in February 2006 after a bad start to the 2005–06 season.[18] Glenn Roeder took over, initially on a temporary basis, before being appointed full-time manager at the end of the season.[19] Shearer retired at the end of the 2005–06 season as the club's all-time record goal scorer, with a total of 206 goals.

Despite finishing the 2005–06 season in seventh, Roeder's fortunes changed in the 2006–07 season, with a terrible injury run to the senior squad, and he left the club by mutual consent on 6 May 2007.[20]

Sam Allardyce was appointed Roeder's replacement as manager on 15 May 2007.[21] On 7 June 2007 Freddy Shepherd's final shares in the club were sold to Mike Ashley and Shepherd was replaced as chairman by Chris Mort on 25 July.[22][23]

Decline and relegation

Allardyce departed the club on 9 January 2008 by mutual consent after a bad start to the 2007–08 season.[24]

On 16 January 2008, Kevin Keegan was reappointed as Newcastle manager.[25] Mort stepped down as chairman in June and was replaced by Derek Llambias, a long-term associate of Ashley.[26] Newcastle finished the 2007–08 season in twelfth place, but as the season drew to a close, Keegan publicly criticised the board, claiming they were not providing the team enough financial support.[27] On 4 September Keegan resigned as manager stating "It's my opinion that a manager must have the right to manage and that clubs should not impose upon any manager any player that he does not want".[28] Keegan stated in 2013 he would only consider returning to the club only after Mike Ashley leaves.[29]

Former Wimbledon manager Joe Kinnear was appointed manager on 26 September 2008.[30] But in February 2009, Kinnear was admitted to hospital following reports of heart trouble, and subsequently underwent heart surgery, withdrawing from his managerial duties while on convalescent leave. Alan Shearer was appointed interim manager in his absence.[31]

Under Shearer, the club were relegated to the Football League Championship at the end of the 2008–09 season, the first time the club had left the Premier League since joining it in 1993.[32]

Following their relegation, the club was put up for sale in June 2009, with an asking price of £100 million.[33] Chris Hughton was given the manager job on a caretaker basis before taking over full-time on 27 October 2009.[34] On the same day, Ashley announced that the club was no longer for sale.[35]

Return to the top

Hughton led Newcastle to win the 2009–10 Football League Championship, securing automatic promotion on 5 April 2010 with five games remaining, and securing the title on 19 April 2010; Newcastle were promoted back to the Premier League after just one season away.[36][37][38]

Under Hughton, Newcastle enjoyed a strong start to the 2010–11 season, recording famous wins against Aston Villa, Arsenal and archrivals Sunderland. Despite his high popularity among fans following these memorable wins, Hughton was sacked on 6 December 2010, following a 3–1 defeat to West Bromwich Albion. The club's board stated that they felt "an individual with more managerial experience [was] needed to take the club forward."[39] Three days later, Alan Pardew was appointed as manager with a five and a half-year contract.[40][41] Further controversy was caused on 31 January 2011, when striker Andy Carroll was sold to Liverpool for a club record of £35 million.[42] Despite this turbulence, Newcastle were able to finish twelfth at the end of the season, with one particular highlight being a 4–4 home draw against Arsenal which saw Newcastle come back from four goals down to claim a point.[43]

The start of the 2011–12 season saw an overhaul in the first team, with the sale of influential first team players Kevin Nolan, Joey Barton and José Enrique during the summer and the elevation of Tim Krul as first choice goalkeeper and centre back Fabricio Coloccini as captain. Signings such as Yohan Cabaye, Italian international Davide Santon and Senegalese striker Demba Ba in cut-price deals saw Newcastle adopt a new transfer policy, one which would be met with success in the season. Newcastle went on to enjoy one of their strongest openings to a season, playing 11 consecutive games unbeaten before losing away to Manchester City.

A string of games without a win saw Newcastle drop from 3rd to 7th in the league table, however a famous win over Manchester United and the capture of Senegal striker Papiss Cissé in the January transfer window sparked a resurgence from the Magpies. Cisse, along with the on-form Hatem Ben Arfa, inspired Newcastle to a strong second half of the season, going on a 6-game winning run and recording memorable victories against Liverpool and Chelsea to put the Magpies in contention for European football. Newcastle eventually secured a place in the 2012–13 Europa League after a 3–0 home victory over Stoke City. A bad run of three defeats in the last four league games ultimately ended lingering hopes of Champions League football, but Newcastle still managed to finish in 5th place, their highest league position since the Bobby Robson days. Further honours were to come as Newcastle manager Alan Pardew won both the Premier League Manager of the Season and the LMA Manager of the Year awards, captain Fabricio Coloccini was named in the PFA Team of the Year, and Papiss Cisse won the Goal of the Season award for his stunning effort in a 2–0 away win against Chelsea.

The 2012–13 season saw Newcastle regain European football for the first time since 2007. Despite the extra European matches, the acquisition of midfielders Gaël Bigirimana and Vurnon Anita proved to be the only signings in a quiet summer transfer window. The failure to bolster the squad proved costly for Newcastle, as an extensive list of injuries developed, including layoffs to key midfielders Yohan Cabaye & Hatem Ben Arfa, and defenders Steven & Ryan Taylor. As a result, the first half of the season was marred by a run of 10 losses in 13 games, which saw Newcastle sink near the relegation zone. Despite this, the club were able to qualify for the knockout stages of the Europa League, finishing second in the group behind French side Bordeaux.

The disappointing first half of the season sparked great activity during the January transfer window. Demba Ba's release clause was activated by Chelsea, but the Magpies nonetheless pioneered the arrival of five French players in Moussa Sissoko, Mathieu Debuchy,[44] Yoan Gouffran, Massadio Haïdara and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa. Their arrival had an immediate impact as Newcastle rediscovered their form, winning three consecutive home games, including a memorable win over European champions Chelsea. The club also reached the Europa League quarterfinals, defeating Metallist Kharkiv and Anzhi Makhachkala before bowing out to eventual finalists Benfica. However, Newcastle's exit in Europe would be followed by a major slump in form, which saw them drop perilously towards the relegation zone. Newcastle lost 0–3 at home in the Tyne-Wear derby before suffering their heaviest top-flight defeat to Liverpool, when they lost 0–6 at home. This was their worst home defeat since 1925. Despite this, Newcastle eventually survived thanks to a 2–1 victory over already relegated Queens Park Rangers on the penultimate game of the season, lifting them to 41 points. They lost 0–1 at home to Arsenal on the final day. They finished the season in 16th place.

On 16 June 2013, former manager Joe Kinnear announced that he was making a surprise return to the club as Director of Football, sparking an outcry from fans of the club.[45] Newcastle were the only club in the Premier League not to make a major signing in the summer transfer window, with Loïc Rémy the only first team player to come in (on loan). Despite losing away heavily to Manchester City on the first day of the season (the fourth time in a row they had lost the fixture), the Magpies went on to have a strong start the season, picking up 20 points in their first 12 games, including victories over Chelsea & Spurs, a hard fought draw against Liverpool with ten men, and a streak of four consecutive League victories for the first time since April 2012. The sale of key playmaker Yohan Cabaye to Paris St Germain in January 2014 precipitated a severely lacking second half to the season, marked by a string of six defeats, the worst for the club since the start of the Premier League.[46]

Colours and badge

Newcastle United's original colours, worn until 1894

The club colours are black and white striped shirt with black shorts with claret and white trim, and black socks with white trim, though white socks are sometimes worn under some managers who consider them "lucky".[47] Newcastle's colours at the outset was generally the home kit of Newcastle East End F.C., comprising plain red shirts with white shorts and red socks. In 1894 the club adopted the black and white striped shirts, which had been used as the reserve team's colours. These colours were chosen for the senior team because they weren't associated with either of the two teams United were merged from. They played in grey shorts until 1897, and between 1897 and 1921 they played in blue shorts before adopting the black shorts they play in now.[5][48]

United's away colours have changed a number of times over the years. They played in white shirts, with black shorts from 1914 until 1961, and then white shorts until 1966. They then played in yellow shirts and blue shorts for the 1967–68 season, but from 1969 to 1974 they played in all red with an all blue third kit. In 1974 they returned to a yellow shirt, which they played with various coloured shorts until 1983. They played in all grey from 1983 to 1988, before once again returning to the yellow kit until 1993. Since 1995, the away kit has changed consistently and has not been the same for more than a single season.[49][50] The club's shirt sponsor has been Newcastle based bank Northern Rock since 2003, but prior to this, they had been sponsored at different times by ntl:Telewest, Newcastle Brown Ale and Greenall's.[48] Through owner Mike Ashley, the club also has a relationship with the Sports Direct retail chain which he founded.[51]

On 4 January 2012 Virgin Money, who had just bought Northern Rock, signed a 2 year deal to sponsor Newcastle United.[52] In January 2010, Puma became the official supplier and licensee of replica merchandise for Newcastle United. The deal meant Puma supplied team kit, replica kit and training equipment for the 2010–11 and 2011–12 seasons.[53]

Newcastle United crest: 1983—1988

The current club crest was first used in the 1988–89 season. The crest includes elements from the coat of arms of the city of Newcastle upon Tyne; the two sea horses representing Tyneside's strong connections with the sea, the castle representing the city's Norman keep.[54] The city's coat of arms were first embroidered on the team's shirts in 1969 and worn as standard until 1976.[48] A scroll at the bottom featured the city's motto in Latin; fortiter defendit triumphans which translates into English as "triumphing by brave defence".[55] From 1976 until 1983, the club wore a specific badge which was developed to wear in place of the city's coat of arms. The design was of a circular shape, which featured the club's name in full, it contained a magpie standing in front of the River Tyne with the historic Norman castle of Newcastle in the background.[56] A more simplistic design followed in 1983, featuring the initials of the club's name, NUFC with the small magpie used in the previous crest within the horizontally laid C, this logo was relatively short lived and was discontinued after 1988.[56]

On 16 May 2013, Newcastle United released the away shirt for the 2013–14 Season which for the first time features the Wonga.com logo which has attracted criticism from many Newcastle supporters, the shirt is navy blue with light blue bands. The shirt received mixed reviews from Newcastle supporters who described the shirt as 'awesome' and 'bland' as quoted in the Newcastle Evening Chronicle.[57] In July 2013, practicing Muslim Papiss Cisse refused to wear any official kit or training wear with reference to Wonga.com. Subsequently Cisse failed to travel to the 2013 pre-season tour of Portugal.[58] The matter has since been resolved.[59]

Kit sponsors

Period Kit manufacturer
1974–1975 Bukta
1975–1976 Umbro
1976–1980 Bukta
1980–1993 Umbro
1993–1995 Asics
1995–2010 Adidas
2010– Puma
Period Kit sponsor
1980–1986 Newcastle Breweries
1986–1990 Greenall's Beers
1990–2000 McEwan's Lager/Newcastle Brown Ale
2000–2003 NTL
2003–2012 Northern Rock
2012–2013 Virgin Money[52][60]
2013– Wonga.com[61]

Stadium

Main article: St James' Park
Newcastle finished as the Football League's best supported club on ten occasions. NUFC were the first club in the world to attract over 1 million for league games (1946–47) and average over 50,000 for league games (1947–48; 56,283).

Throughout Newcastle United's history, their home venue has been St. James' Park —the oldest and largest football stadium in North East England, and the sixth largest football stadium in the United Kingdom.[62] It has hosted 10 international football matches at senior level, the first in 1901, and the most recent in 2005.[63][64] It was used as a venue for the 2012 Summer Olympics and will be used for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.[62][65]

Football had been played at St James' Park as early as 1880, the ground being occupied by Newcastle Rangers, before becoming the home of Newcastle West End F.C. in 1886. Its lease was then bought by Newcastle East End F.C. in 1892, before they changed their name to Newcastle United. At the turn of the 19th century the ground's capacity was given as 30,000, before being redeveloped between 1900 and 1905, increasing the capacity to 60,000, making it the biggest stadium in England for a time. For most of the 20th century, the stadium changed very little, despite various plans for development of the ground. The old West Stand was replaced with the Milburn Stand in 1987, the Sir John Hall Stand replacing the Leazes End in 1993, and the rest of the ground renovated making the ground a 37,000 capacity all-seater stadium. Between 1998 and 2000, double tiers were added to the Milburn and John Hall stands to bring the venue up to its current capacity of 52,420. There were plans to build a new 90,000 seater stadium in Leazes park, just behind St James' with Newcastle Falcons taking over St James' Park, but due to protests the plans were dropped. St James' Park currently seats 52,420 people but club owner Mike Ashley would consider taking the roof off The Gallowgate end and adding another 6,000 seats making the total capacity to 58,420, but only if the team manage to finish in the top six places of the Premier League.[5][66]

In October 2009, Mike Ashley announced that he planned to lease the name of the ground in a bid to increase revenue, and in November the stadium was temporarily renamed sportsdirect.com @ St James' Park Stadium.[35][67] This name was only supposed to be used until the end of the 2009–10 season, but lasted until November 2011.[67][68] On 10 November 2011, the club officially changed the name of the stadium to the 'Sports Direct Arena'. Although this will most likely be an interim name as it is only being used to showcase the sponsorship capabilities of the stadium. The company, owned by Ashley, are not paying anything for the deal. However, if another company purchases the naming rights they will be expected to pay between £8 million and £10 million.[69][70] Many fans voiced their anger at the renaming, but Managing Director Derek Llambias has said that it is necessary to give Newcastle extra money so that they compete with the bigger clubs in the league.[71]

Since 1982, the stadium is served by St James Metro station on the Tyne and Wear Metro. The station is decorated in a black and white colour scheme, with archive photographs of the club's players.[72]

The club's current training ground is located at Darsley Park, which is north of the city at Benton. The facility was opened in July 2003, and is also used by the Newcastle Falcons rugby team.[73]

A panorama of St James' Park from the Milburn Stand, showing from left to right the Sir John Hall Stand, the East Stand and the Gallowgate End

Ownership

Newcastle United was set up as a private company limited by shares on 6 September 1895.[6] The club traded in this way for much of the 20th century, until April 1997, when John Hall, who bought 72.9% of the club for £3 million in 1991, floated the club on the stock exchange as a public limited company, with less than half the shares sold to the Hall family and the majority holding going to his business partner Freddy Shepherd. Later that year Hall stepped down as chairman and was replaced by Shepherd, with the Hall family represented on the board by John's son Douglas.[74] In December 1998, after buying a 6.3% stake in the club for £10m, the media group NTL had considered a full takeover of the club. This was later dropped after the April 1999 Competition Commission, brought in due to government concerns about football clubs being owned by media companies.[75]

In 2007, businessman Mike Ashley purchased the combined stakes of both Douglas and John Hall, 41% share in the club, through a holding company St James Holdings, with a view to buy the rest.[76] Upon purchasing this share he appointed Chris Mort as chairman, while gaining more shares, owning 93.19% of the club by 29 June 2007.[77] This figure reached 95% on 11 July 2007, forcing the remaining shareholders to sell their shares.[78]

Since completing the purchase of the club, Ashley has twice announced that he planned to sell the club. The first occurred after fan protests over the resignation of Kevin Keegan on 14 September 2008, when Ashley stated "I have listened to you. You want me out. That is what I am now trying to do".[79] However, he took it off the market on 28 December 2008 after being unable to find a buyer.[80] On 31 May 2009 it was reported that Ashley was attempting to sell the club again.[81][82] On 8 June 2009, Ashley confirmed that the club was up for sale at an asking price of £100 million.[83] By the end of August 2009, the club was back off the market.[84]

Social responsibility

Newcastle United established the Newcastle United Foundation in summer 2008, which seeks to encourage learning and promote healthy living amongst disadvantaged children, young people and families in the North East region, as well as promoting equality and diversity.[85][86] The Foundation's manager Kate Bradley told charity news website The Third Sector, "Children look up to players as their heroes, and anything they say is instantly taken on board. If Newcastle defender Steven Taylor tells them not to eat a Mars bar for breakfast, they'll listen."[87] In 2010, the charity taught over 5,000 children about healthy living.[85]

The Foundation's commitment, along with a similar foundation run by West Bromwich Albion, the unique relationship that Aston Villa has with Acorns Children's Hospice and Tottenham Hotspur has with SOS Children's Villages UK, are some leading examples of commitment in the highest level of football to responsibility and change in the communities in which they work and who enrich them through their support and ticket sales. The work of these clubs, and others, are changing the way professional sport interacts with their communities and supporters.[88][89]

In December 2012 the club announced that it had become the world’s first carbon positive football club.[90]

Supporters and rivalries

Supporters at St. James' Park

Supporters of Newcastle United are drawn from all over the North East and beyond, with supporters' clubs all across the world.[91] The club's supporters are also known as the Magpies, the Geordies or the Toon Army. The name Toon originates from the Geordie pronunciation of town.[92][93] In a 2004 survey by Co-operative Financial Services, it was found that Newcastle United topped the league table for the cost incurred and distance travelled by Newcastle based fans wishing to travel to every Premier League away game. The total distance travelled for a fan to attend every away game from Newcastle was found to be equivalent to a round-the-world trip.[94] In the 2009–10 when the club were playing in English football's second tier, the Football League Championship, the average attendance at St James Park was 43,388, the fourth best for an English club that season.[95] At the end of the 2011–12 Premier league season, Newcastle United held the third highest average attendance for the season of 49,935.[96] This figure was only surpassed by Arsenal and Manchester United, the only two clubs in the premier league with larger stadiums.

The club's supporters publish a number of fanzines including True Faith and The Mag, along with NUFC.com, which was established in 1996. They set up Newcastle United Supporters Trust in September 2008, aiming to "represent the broad church of Newcastle United's support".[97]

In addition to the usual English football chants, Newcastle's supporters sing the traditional Tyneside song Blaydon Races.[98][99]

Traditionally, Newcastle's main rivals are Sunderland, against whom the Tyne–Wear derby is competed.

Statistics

To date Newcastle United have spent 82 seasons in the top-flight. They are eighth in the All-time FA Premier League table and have the eighth highest total of major honours won by an English club with 11 wins.[3] The holder of the record for the most appearances is Jimmy Lawrence, having made 496 first team appearances between 1904 and 1921.[100] The club's top goal scorer is Alan Shearer, who scored 206 goals in all competitions between 1996 and 2006.[101] Andy Cole holds the record for the most goals scored in a season: 41 in the 1993–94 season in the Premier League.[100] Shay Given was the most capped international for the club, with 80 appearances for Republic of Ireland.[100]

The club's widest victory margin in the league was in the 13–0 win against Newport County in the Second Division in 1946. Their heaviest defeat in the league was 9–0 against Burton Wanderers in the Second Division in 1895.[100] The club's longest number of consecutive seasons in the top flight of English football was 35 from 1898–99 until 1933–34.

Newcastle's record home attendance is 68,386 for a First Division match against Chelsea on 3 September 1930.[100] The club's highest attendance in the Premier League is 52,389, in a match against Manchester City on 6 May 2012. Newcastle lost the game 2–0.[102] The highest transfer fee received for a Newcastle player is £35 million, from Liverpool for Andy Carroll in January 2011, while the most spent by the club on a player was £16 million for striker Michael Owen from Real Madrid in August 2005.[42][100]

Honours

Newcastle United have won European and domestic league honours. The club's last major honour was in 1969 when they won the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup.[103]

Domestic

League titles

Cups

  • Runner-up (1) – 1976

European

  • Winners (1) − 1969
  • Winners (1) − 2006
  • Runner-up (1) − 2001

Other honours

  • Winners (1) − 1983
  • Winners (1) − 1973
  • Winners (1) − 1907
  • Winners (1) − 2010
  • Runner-up (1) − 1960
  • Winners (1) − 2012

Players

As of 16 June 2014.

First team squad

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Netherlands GK Tim Krul
2 Argentina DF Fabricio Coloccini (captain)
3 Italy DF Davide Santon
6 England DF Mike Williamson
7 France MF Moussa Sissoko
8 Netherlands MF Vurnon Anita
9 Senegal FW Papiss Cissé
10 France MF Hatem Ben Arfa
11 France FW Yoan Gouffran
13 France DF Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa
16 England DF Ryan Taylor
18 Argentina MF Jonás Gutiérrez
19 France DF Massadio Haïdara
20 England MF Gaël Bigirimana
21 Republic of Ireland GK Rob Elliot
22 France MF Sylvain Marveaux
No. Position Player
24 Ivory Coast MF Cheick Tioté (vice-captain)
25 France MF Gabriel Obertan
26 France DF Mathieu Debuchy
27 England DF Steven Taylor
28 England FW Sammy Ameobi
29 Slovenia MF Haris Vučkić
31 Northern Ireland DF Shane Ferguson
33 Australia DF Curtis Good
36 Wales DF Paul Dummett
39 Algeria MF Mehdi Abeid
43 England FW Adam Armstrong
49 England FW Adam Campbell
Spain FW Ayoze Pérez
England MF Jack Colback
Netherlands MF Siem de Jong

Reserves and academy

For reserve and academy squads, see Newcastle United F.C. Reserves and Academy

Notable players

For details on former players, see List of Newcastle United F.C. players and Category:Newcastle United F.C. players

Management

Current backroom staff

As of 10 July 2014

First Team

Current Newcastle United F.C. manager, Alan Pardew
Position Staff
Manager England Alan Pardew
Assistant Manager England John Carver
First Team Coach England Steve Stone
First Team Goalkeeping Coach England Andy Woodman
Head of Fitness England Dave Billows
First Team Fitness Coach England Simon Tweddle
Strength and Conditioning Coach England Chris Wilding
Club Doctor England Paul Catterson
Head of Physiotherapy England Derek Wright
First Team Physiotherapist England Michael Harding
First Team Physiotherapist England Carl Nelson
Chief Scout England Graham Carr
Technical Scout England Lee Fraser
Scout England Ian Sampson

Last updated: 4 July 2014
Source: First Team

Reserves & Academy

Position Staff
Academy Manager Scotland Joe Joyce
Football Development Manager England Peter Beardsley
Under-21s Coach Vacant
Under-21s Fitness Coach England Richard Akenhead
Under-18s Coach England Dave Watson
Under-17s Coach England Kevin Richardson
Under-16s Coach England Liam Bramley
Academy Goalkeeping Coach Australia Chris Terpcou
Academy Fitness & Condtioning Coach England Jack Ade
Academy Fitness & Condtioning Coach England Craig Musham
Head of Academy Physiotherapy England Sean Beech
Academy Physiotherapist England Stephen Weir
Head of Academy Recruitment England Steve Nickson

Last updated: 4 July 2014
Source: Academy

Notable managers

For more details on this topic, see List of Newcastle United F.C. managers.
Name Nationality From To P W D L Win%[104] Honours
Selection committee (n/a) 1892 31 December 1929 (n/a) (n/a) (n/a) (n/a) (n/a) 4 First Division championships, 3 Northern League championships, 2 FA Cups, Community Shield winner, Sheriff of London Charity Shield winners
Andy Cunningham  Scotland 1 January 1930 31 May 1935 251 105 45 101 41.83 FA Cup winners
Stan Seymour  England 1 September 1939 1 June 1958 338 130 74 134 38.46 2 FA Cups
Doug Livingstone  Scotland 1 December 1954 1 January 1956 99 43 20 36 43.43 FA Cup winners
Joe Harvey  England 1 June 1962 1 June 1975 591 224 152 215 37.90 Second Division championship, Inter-Cities Fairs Cup winner, Anglo-Italian Cup winner, 2 Texaco Cups
Arthur Cox  England 1 September 1980 24 May 1984 169 76 42 51 44.97 Kirin Cup winner
Kevin Keegan  England 5 February 1992 8 January 1997 251 138 51 62 54.98 First Division championship
Sir Bobby Robson  England 3 September 1999 30 August 2004 255 119 72 64 46.67 UEFA Cup semi-finals, UEFA Champions League group stage
Glenn Roeder  England 2 February 2006 6 May 2007 72 33 15 24 45.83 Intertoto Cup winner
Chris Hughton  Ireland 24 May 2009 6 December 2010 64 38 11 15 59.38 Championship winner, Trofeo Teresa Herrera winner
Alan Pardew  England 9 December 2010 Present 114 43 30 42 37.72 Guadiana Trophy winner, UEFA Europa League quarter-finals

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External links