With Newcastle United slipping to their seventh defeat of the Premier League campaign in the match last weekend against Brighton and Hove Albion, the club are now propping up the top-flight table in 20th place with only a two-point return from our nine games so far.
Clearly, Mike Ashley remains a long-term target for the vast majority of fans given the running and the lack of investment in the side in recent years, but there is a growing trend it seems on social media where some fans are on the one hand, understandably criticising manager Rafa Benitez for his selections and in-game decisions.
But on the other hand, a trend of outright criticism believing that the Spaniard’s time is now up and that he’s no longer our saving grace, but a more significant part of the problem.
It’s down to each fan to work out which side of the fence they sit, for me I’m not sure I understand the latter camps thinking but that’s me. One thing is for sure though, the club continues to be easy pickings for the media and Talksport took full advantage of the above debate this week.
???? @JimWhite: “The blame lies with Rafa and players not Mike Ashley.”
???? Danny Murphy: “It’s Ashley’s fault for not spending – it's ridiculous”
“Rafa’s hands are tied, but if he stays he will keep them up!”
— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) October 22, 2018
Understandably fans lapped it up to get their point across and I’m sure Talksport loved the reaction, but even if many fans agree on Ashley, (click on the above Tweet for some responses) it shows how polarised a debate it has become with fans who no longer go being attacked for not supporting their club, whilst fans who still go being attacked for being part of the problem and enabling the status quo.
The new Rafa element to the debate is only going to split and inflame things further.