ToTT gets the lowdown on being a supporter from Australia. Start of a new feature from the fans.
Today sees the start of a new feature on Talk of the Tyne with a view from various fans of NUFC.
Today it’s the turn of Jiggystoon from Australia.
What was the thought behind the username?
Jiggy is an old nickname that some of my mates call me, it came from a joke surrounding one of my old school teachers and basically the name Jiggy stuck, the Toon part of it is pretty self explanatory so I went with Jiggystoon.
A cheeky question but what is your age?
Being an Australian, what is the link with NUFC?
I grew up loving Football, there used to be an old show on the telly every Sunday morning which used to show highlights of premiership games, at the time anything Football that was on the telly I was up for watching, I was about 9 or 10 at the time, I remember seeing the highlights of a Newcastle match, I remember Sir Les, Tino, Ginola etc and from that point on I was hooked on them. As technology developed throughout the 90`s and 2000`s I was able to get more exposure to them via the internet etc, and the passion has just grown since, and I love it
Would you say NUFC are well known in your country?
Not really, there are plenty of people around who follow Football, I would say that 99% of them “follow” one of the big 4, it makes me laugh at how many “lifelong” Man City fans I have met in the last couple of years. As far as NUFC goes I can honestly say I have only met two fans in my life, one used to work with my dad and was best mates with a Geordie and the other was a Geordie who was married to a lady I used to work with, there are some supporter groups in Australia but how big they are im not so sure.
You say, that NUFC aren’t that well known in Australia, do you think the club does enough for it’s overseas fans?
I havent really heard of anything from the club in an official sense in regards to overseas support, if im being honest im not sure that there is a huge market for the club down this way, as I mentioned in my previous answers there are some small supporter groups which have been started up by some Geordie ex-pats but not enough for the club to really consider taking seriously, anyways I dont wanna see Australia plastered with Sports Direct signs everywhere!! As would be the case if the fat man could smell a market lol
Obviously you’d love the club to go on a pre-season tour there, wouldn’t you?
Yeah I would be over the moon to get to see the players close up, but im honest when I say I wouldnt want the club going on some pre season tour down under that would be of detriment to the season proper (im thinking of last seasons trip to the US). Another thing is that I always kind of imagined that my first time seeing them play would be at SJP so if it never happened I wouldnt lose to much sleep over it but if it did I would make sure I took full advantage of it
Have you attended any games or is there an intention to at some point?
Never attended a game, I have never even been out of Australia! It would be a dream to go to SJP and also to visit Newcastle, It is something that I will get to at some stage, hopefully that time is sooner rather then later!
The First game you remember?
First full toon game I remember seeing on the telly was the opening game of the season against Man U at Old Trafford in the 99/00 season, a mate taped it for me, we lost the match 2-0, prior to that I had only mostly seen highlights.
How long would you say you have followed the black and whites?
Since I was about 9, so that would be around 19 years
What’s the most memorable time for you as a fan?
I can still remember the excitement during that 01/02 season around xmas time when we had just knocked off Arsenal at Highbury and a few weeks later we come back form 3-1 down to beat Leeds away, we were top of the league, Sir Bobby had us flying, for me it was a really exciting time, in fact I would have to put that whole period of Sir Bobby`s tenure as my most exciting time
Favourite NUFC game of all time?
Im going to name 3 because I cant split them, the 4-3 win at Elland Road when we came from 3-1 down, the 3-2 win over Feyenoord when Bellamy scored in the last minute to put us through to the next stage of the CL and the 4-4 draw with Arsenal when we came from 4-0 down, all three were amazing games, I could keep going, there are plenty of others that spring to mind!
Favourite NUFC goal?
Again I cant pick any one favourite goal, Robert scored some amazing goals, Shearer likewise, Cisse`s effort against Chelsea last season was a gem, Albert`s chip to make it 5-0 against Man U, Shearer`s volleys against Everton and also against Villa. If I had to pick one I would go with Shearer`s volley against Everton
Gary Speed was one player that I had a huge admiration for as a player, to me he was everything that a professional footballer should be. Coloccini would be another, great leader and one that has worked his socks off to become the player he is for us, could have left us for dead after the relegation but stayed, I admire that a lot.
How would you rate the job that Alan Pardew has done?
He wasn`t a popular choice when he was appointed, I was certainly with the majority. Im happy to say that I think he has done a very good job considering the severe restrictions that he works under. Whether or not it was down to his great management, pot luck or a touch of both, to get us to 5th last season with a chance of sneaking 3rd on the last day of the season was a fantastic result. It was always going to be tough to replicate that this season, injuries and a lack of investment in the first team haven`t helped his cause this season, some people are critical of his tactics and at times I agree but overall I think he is doing a good job.
What do you think Mike Ashley can do to win more people over?
Investing in the first team would help, its not just about throwing 100 mill around across a summer transfer window, but it is about spending to at least meet some basic needs that squad requires, namely cover defensively and also up front, off the field he can do a lot more for himself by being a bit more open about what his intentions are for the club, I would like to see him do this himself instead of using his mouthpiece Llambias to do that the dirty work all the time. Ashley paints a persona that puts making money above anything else, that may work in the business world but not when you own a Football club
Do you think the club has learned from past mistakes?
Yes and no. I don`t think that the type of mistakes made that lead to the relegation (appointing Dennis Wise and Joe Kinnear) would ever happen again but the club still continues to make decisions that make little sense, namely a lack of investment in the squad and trying to sell the naming rights of SJP being the main ones that spring to mind, just when we seem to think that the club has learned they always seem to find a way to bugger it up again.
What realistic signing would make you happy in January?
We really cant go on without adequate cover at centre back, as Mike Williamson has shown us in recent weeks so I would be happy to see a centre back come in, a full back and another striker would really help out as well, we wont get all of those so if I had to choose I would say we need another centre back.
How long have you visited Talk of the Tyne?
I have used TOTT for around 5 years on and off I think, I was a part of the old website before it moved onto Vital. I signed on with Vital and have been there ever since.
What’s the best/worst bits about it?
For me the best part about TOTT is that is my gateway to NUFC, we are very lucky to have such a sound community with many diverse opinions that all have the clubs best interests at heart. Another thing I really enjoy is the level of non-football talk, there are some really knowledgeable people who use the forum about all kinds of different subjects, basically there is always something happening which is really good.
Is there any area in which we can improve?
I would love to see an android app in the future, although difficult to police I would like to see a bit more of a crackdown on users who log on with multiple accounts just to try and stir trouble
What’s the best/funniest thread you’ve seen?
I can still remember BBM`s thread while he was in hospital, they way he descried the other people he was sharing a room with was hilarious. I also got a bit of a chuckle when it all kicked off on the Millwall board when Tino paid them a visit
Who’s been the most annoying poster in your time?
Latic, especially when he insisted on sprouting his Wigan related stuff on the board, basically stuff that no one gave a crap about
Where do you think NUFC will finish?
A couple of weeks ago I had hopes that we could still finish top 7, while that is still possible I fear that our already thin squad could start to really feel the pinch in the new year, I still think we will finish top 10, I will say 9th.
Also, in The Europa Cup?
Would love to see us go on a bit of a cup run, our form has been pretty good, I wouldn`t surprised if we managed to make it to a quarter final or even a semi final.
and The FA Cup?
Its Newcastle so we will probably go out straight away lol again though I would love to see a cup run, if we are still in Europe I don`t think Pardew will put much focus into it as we would be spread to thin so not expecting to much.
Where do you see us in 3 years time?
That is purely and simply up to Mike Ashley. I firmly believe that the squad in its current state with some key additions is capable of being competitive in and around the top 5 or 6 on a consistent, possible even giving the top 4 a shake. Having said that it is not even a given that Ashley will still be at the club, I just hope that in 3 years time the club is healthy, competitive on the field with the club and the supporters enjoying a healthy stream of communication and transparency.
Finally, choose a question to ask the next person interviewed?
If you could be the owner of NUFC for a week, what would you do?
Cheers Jiggy, an interesting insight there.