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Your 14 years under Ashley


Kid Icarus
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Maybe one for tomorrow, but it's  mad to think of the things that we'll have all got up to in the time that Ashley's owned the club, how old we were then vs now, where we've been, what we've done. Would love to read what's changed for everyone. 

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I was 30 when he took over, and thought we'd push on with a billionaire owner who could take us to the next level.

 

Instead I spent 5 years hoping he was just making rookie mistakes and that he'd learn and come good, then about the next decade distancing myself from the team to the point where for as long as I can recall I've not even had a football club to support.

 

Sadly I moved away from the area a good while ago, but I'm so excited by what this all offers now.

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Honestly horrific and not something I’d wish on fans of any other club.  
 

If you’d asked me what kind of owner I would have liked, a British sportswear billionaire would probably have been top of the list. Sat in front of him at an away game in the necking pints with the fans times. Thought it was going to be class. 
 

Then he basically possessed the club like a parasite, leached it to death and stole it from us all. Renaming the stadium FFS, it would be like having the Aldi Eiffel Tower. 
 

It’s almost impossible to explain to other fans what it was like. You should support your club through thick and thin - that’s founded on the premise that your club is trying to compete just like all the other clubs. That logic just ceased to follow. 
 

Rafa was a ray of hope but it was always temporary, you knew that he would ultimately be incompatible with Ashley and be forced out. And that only a truly desperate or terrible manager would ever last. 
 

It’s probably not an exaggeration to say that Mike Ashley has ruined a large part of the lives of tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of people. 

 

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Its so strange. Ive experienced all of the fucking shite we've had to endure over 14 years but Ive also been able to detract myself from it by essentially giving up. But now we're suddenly presented with it all again as the history of the Ashley era is talked about and dissected. And in a weird way I feel more angry about it now than I have for years, even though he's gone. There's been so much that you just forgot about. Something would happen and youre like "of course". And over the years there's been negative experiences ranging from "ffs" to "fuck off you despicable fucking cunt". Over and over and over until you were numb to it. I shouldnt indulge in the history now the future is brighter but its unavoidable. I think it's also important to remember just how low we got even in this moment. The fans now need to drive this club forward even more than our new owners can. 

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I was living in France when the Keegan return story broke. Was one of the most amazing nights ever knowing KK was coming home. What followed was just an endless procession of my club being debased on a pretty much weekly basis. Ashley sucked the life out of the club and its fans and only Hughton and Rafa managed to instil some pride as they were great men. In these last fourteen years Ive gotten married and have a little girl who’s almost three. I didn’t think I’d ever want her to support NUFC as I didn’t really believe Ashley was going anywhere. I’m so excited about taking her to a game now 

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Like countless others I went from being a season ticket holder to barely giving a toss and frequently wanting the club to lose.
 

Yes, we had the odd good game/win. The 5th season was decent even if the manager was the human form of raw sewage. And of course the Rafa years brought back a semblance of soul but fuck me it’s been shit.
 

Just purposefully, repeatedly and spitefully shit.

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Wanting your own club to lose and concede goals is an absolutely bizarre feeling. 
 

I was at the point where I wanted our attacks to break down and opponents to score, just because that’s the only thing that proved Ashley wrong and made his way of running the club seem wrong. 
 

Absolutely mad really. 

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I was a teenager when he rocked up and now I'm in my 30s. :lol: I'm too young to remember Keegan's team but I was lucky enough to live and breathe the Bobby years. I know how it feels to have a club the whole city is behind. Most of us were over the moon when Ashley took control; a new era had begun, but not of the kind we hoped for. 

 

The high points were in spite of him (the goal rushes Ba and Cisse went on, Europe, HBA, and Rafa), rather than being down to any concerted effort to make the club better. It could have all been so much easier if he'd just brought in someone from day one (or at least after Mort left) to run the club properly. It was all so needlessly spiteful and energy sapping. 

 

I was at the point where I'd accepted it would never change, especially given the last 18 months of (seemingly dead in the water) takeover talk. To go from that to being in the position we now find ourselves in is fucking WILD. I'm so glad that we've got our club back and I can't wait to get back to SJP. 

 

Howay the lads! 

 

 

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In that 14yrs my Dad died slowly and painfully with Emphysema, my Mother in law died slowly and painfully with lung cancer, I held my daughter whilst I thought she was dying as she had her first Seizure and her Autistic spectrum disorder became more apparent.

 

Football and by extension this place, have always been escapes, providing some respite. Sometimes you need to forget about things, not run away, just have them lifted from you long enough to give you the strength to get back in the fight.

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8 minutes ago, madras said:

In that 14yrs my Dad died slowly and painfully with Emphysema, my Mother in law died slowly and painfully with lung cancer, I held my daughter whilst I thought she was dying as she had her first Seizure and her Autistic spectrum disorder became more apparent.

 

Football and by extension this place, have always been escapes, providing some respite. Sometimes you need to forget about things, not run away, just have them lifted from you long enough to give you the strength to get back in the fight.

 

Dude! Oof! :weep: I hope your daughter is doing ok, now.

 

And that last sentence! That's absolutely poetic!

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Find it impossible to sum up really.

 

But I've been rescued from probably my lowest point, I know that much. Literally not seen a ball kicked this season, paid no attention on match days at all, and checked the scores only in the hope that we'd lost, so I could feel vindicated for having turned my back on this wretched version of the club. A truly miserable way to be a football supporter; I would argue the worst way to experience being a fan, worse than being totally shit. 

 

Just looking forward to recapturing that part of my identity, rebuilding that part of the relationship with my Dad (we've definitely lost something, ultimately because of Ashley), and just wanting to feel hope and excitement and that sense of belonging again. That's what he took away with the way he ran the club. 

 

Past tense. :kurt:

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It's honestly tough to sum up. Long time lurker (since the Toontastic board war days) and Ashley took over when I was 16. Since then, I've gone away to university, started a job, gotten married, moved across the world and given up on the club. My partner bought me tickets to see the 2020 New Year's game against Leicester and while it was amazing to explore the city, it felt oddly empty going to a game with Bruce in charge. I grew up on Canada's west coast so spent years as a kid either waking up at 5am or hoping the VCR worked to record the game in time. It feels surreal to see Ashley's reign end and think about just how long it's been. The level of passion isn't there anymore, but I hope I can find at least a spark to get me back in to it.

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2 minutes ago, woody said:

It's honestly tough to sum up. Long time lurker (since the Toontastic board war days) and Ashley took over when I was 16. Since then, I've gone away to university, started a job, gotten married, moved across the world and given up on the club. My partner bought me tickets to see the 2020 New Year's game against Leicester and while it was amazing to explore the city, it felt oddly empty going to a game with Bruce in charge. I grew up on Canada's west coast so spent years as a kid either waking up at 5am or hoping the VCR worked to record the game in time. It feels surreal to see Ashley's reign end and think about just how long it's been. The level of passion isn't there anymore, but I hope I can find at least a spark to get me back in to it.

 

I hope this incredible news today, and the enormous shift change to come, encourages the likes of yourself to post more here. I've routinely felt sad about how quiet this place has got over time - but obviously grateful to the many who keep it going (takeover wank ironically been helpful where that's concerned :lol:). I can remember us having 9 fucking pages for a match thread circa November 2020.

 

Doubt we'll ever get back to 2011 levels cos the Internet has changed a lot since then, but hopefully plenty more days like this one to come when you can hardly keep up. 

 

#offtopicforumwaffle

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23 when he took over. Pottered around for several years doing bugger all before eventually meeting someone that would put up with me and now we have a house, dog (pending second) and I'm hunting for a ring. 

 

Its not been all bad outside of supporting my team I suppose. 

 

 

Edited by Lenny

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Went from an obsessed 21 year old who wouldn't miss a home game under any circumstances to a 36 year old who doesn't watch most of the games and wouldn't have set foot in the ground if you paid me.

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Was 18 I think when he took over, about to go to uni and everything was grand. 

Ended up as a completely different 33-year old who did nowt with that uni degree, but nearly 4 years into the best relationship I could possibly get, including an 8 year old stepson (I still feel incredibly strange calling myself his stepdad) that is just the best.

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