Thursday June 30th, 2022

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Saturday 9th July
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Premier League

Turf Moor
Sunday 22nd May
Match report

The Never-Ending Tour

  Number of Newcastle
  games attended by in 2022/23:






Young team

While much attention has been focused on first team transfers ahead of the new season, Newcastle continue to overhaul their U18 and U21 squads.

And having acquired 18 year-old Alex Murphy from Galway United and 17 year-old Charlie McArthur from Kilmarnock, a third defensive recruit has been secured in the shape of Jordan Hackett.

The 18 year-old full back wasn't retained by Spurs and had a successful trial on Tyneside late last season.

Meanwhile, the Magpies are in pursuit of Southampton's Tyler Dibling, with claims that they are in pole position to sign the highly-rated youngster despite interest from elsewhere in the Premier League.

16 year-old midfielder Dibling saw his profile raised considerably in April after hitting a first half treble for the Saints U23s in a 4-2 PL2 victory at Gallowgate.

United had also been credited with an interest in fellow 16 year-old midfielder Reuben McAllister of Bristol City, but Dibling looks to be their top priority.   

PS: Newcastle have awarded full-time  scholarships to nine players: Scott Bailey, Dylan Charlton, Josh Donaldson, Johnny Emerson, Lewis Miley, Carter Milmore, Darren Palmer and the Powell twins - Harry and Rory.

All but Milmore and Palmer featured at U18 level last season, while striker Emerson had a brief run-out for the U21 side just days after turning 16.

Club memberships
now on sale

NUFC's "Black & White membership" scheme for the coming season opened on Thursday at 10am, with sign-ups available online only at a cost of £35.

The scheme gives non-season ticket holders the chance to buy tickets on a match-by-match basis - restricted to one seat per membership.

Season ticket holders automatically retain membership status and are also now restricted to buying one additional seat per ST holder, subject to availability.

At 10.30am, the queue management system used by the club indicated a queue length of almost 20,000.

Magpie Mover:
longer for less

This season's Magpie Mover pass is now on sale to NUFC season ticket holders at a new price of £25 for all age categories (previously £30) and with an extended period of usage.

Magpie Movers permit public transport use across Tyne and wear on home matchdays* beginning three hours before kick-off and now valid from any Newcastle city centre departure point until the end of service that day, replacing the previous three hour post-match window.

Applications must be made online via the NUFC box office online here and passes will be posted out. 

* Magpie Movers are valid for Premier League home games and any FA Cup or Carabao Cup ties at SJP. Friendlies and U18/U23 games aren't included.

Austria friendlies confirmed

Newcastle's pre-season programme continues to take shape, with news of three further games and confirmation of one other kick-off time.

Eddie Howe's squad kick off against Gateshead behind closed doors at Darsley Park on Saturday July 9th, before flying to Austria for a training camp.

That will include friendlies as follows:

Fri 15.07.2022 1860 Munich (n)
@ Saalfelden Arena, 6pm. Ticket details awaited.

The home of Austrian Regional League side FC Pinzgau Saalfelden has a 1,500 capacity and regularly stages friendlies involving sides at training camps in the area.

Red Bull Salzburg and Ajax are also due to play there in July, with Liverpool among previous visitors.

Our Intertoto opponents in 2001, 1860 now play in the Bundesliga third tier and have begun their preparations. Their meeting with us will be their eighth and final scheduled pre-season kickabout. 

Mon 18.07.2022 Mainz 05 (n)
@ Kufstein Arena, 5pm. Ticket details awaited.

Another picturesque venue used by an Austrian Regional League side - FC Kufstein - the Arena holds 4,500 fans and lies some 40 miles away from Saalfelden.

Mainz hosted Newcastle in pre-season back in 2017, future Magpie Yoshinori Muto in the side that beat us 1-2.

The Bundesliga top flight side begin their competitive season with a cup tie on July 31st and are already in training - beating a local amateur side 21-0 last week.

Following the Austrian training camp, United will head to Portugal, with a previously-announced kickabout against Benfica on Tuesday July 26th.

They then return to Tyneside for games against Atalanta and Bilbao - the latter now confirmed as a 3pm KO.

Tue 26.07.2022 Benfica (a)
@ Estadio da Luz, 8pm.
Ticket details awaited.

Fri 29.07.2022
Atalanta (h)
@ SJP, 7.45pm.
Tickets on sale from Tue 05.07.2022.

Sat 30.07.2022
Athletic Bilbao (h)
@ SJP, 3pm.
Tickets on sale from Tue 05.07.2022.

PS: United's U21 side have confirmed a trio of pre-season games - with the opener following a training camp in Spain:

Sat 16.07.2022 Elche (n)

@ Pinatar Arena, Spain, 7pm.

Wed 20.07.2022 Blackburn Rovers U21s (a)

@ Brockhall, 2pm.

Wed 27.07.2022 Sheffield United U21s (h)
@ Little Benton, 1pm.

Old boy:
Gills take Jake

Another player released by Newcastle at the end of last season has a new club, Jake Turner agreeing a permanent deal of unspecified duration with League Two Gillingham.

The 23 year-old goalkeeper was a free agent when joining Newcastle ahead of the 2019/20 season, playing for the U23s before loan spells at
Morecambe and Colchester United.

Sven signs....sort of

Update: from NUFC, Tuesday night:

Newcastle United have agreed a deal in principle with LOSC Lille to sign Dutch defender Sven Botman for an undisclosed fee, holding off competition from a host of European sides to secure the highly-rated centre-back.

Botman has completed his medical on Tyneside and agreed the terms of a five-year contract.

The formalities of the transfer are set to be concluded this week, following which the 22-year-old will officially become a Newcastle United player.

(The Lille official website made no reference to any Botman transfer on Tuesday, amid media claims that formal confirmation of the deal will follow on July 1st for financial reasons).

Earlier: United are closing in their third senior acquisition of the close season, with Lille central defender Sven Botman flying into Newcastle by private jet on Monday.

The 22 year-old Dutchman was driven to Darsley Park before later appearing at St. James' Park. A £35m+ fee is claimed.

Born in a suburb of Amsterdam, Sven began his career in the Ajax Academy and played second tier football for them from the age of 18.

Featuring for Ajax's first team in summer 2019, Botman then spent the next season on loan at Heerenveen before a £7.5m switch to Lille followed in July 2020.

A maiden year in French football brought Europa League action and ended with title success - last season adding Champions League experience and a tenth place finish in a side featuring SJP old boy Hatem Ben Arfa.

Internationally, Sven represented his home nation from the U15s to the U21s, recently captaining the latter. Twice on the bench for the Dutch seniors in 2020, he's yet to feature at that level.  

Up and under:
Magic... giveaway

Magic Weekend is heading back to Tyneside next month - the sixth time that Rugby League's annual showpiece event will be staged at SJP.

12 Super League sides will meet over two days:

Sat 09.07.2022:
Wakefield v Toulouse (2.30pm)
St Helens v Wigan (4.45pm)
Leeds v Castleford Tigers (7pm)

Sun 10.07.2022:
Huddersfield v Salford (1pm)
Catalans v Warrington (3.15pm)
Hull FC v Hull KR (5.30pm)

Tickets are available now online here and we have pairs of weekend passes up for grabs in a free-to-enter competition.

In order to be in with a chance of winning, tell us which Magic Weekend side play home games at the venue pictured below, when hosting the Magpies in its other guise as a football ground.

Entries to subject line of Magic by Noon on Friday July 1st. No age limit, entries welcome from anywhere on the planet but tickets will only be posted out to UK addresses. One entry per person.

Third kit confirmed

Having brought forward the on sale date for the 2022/23 home kit, Tuesday saw Newcastle launch their third kit.

Leaked online some weeks ago, it's a white shirt with green detail, which is accompanied by green shorts.

And has been widely mentioned, the kit bears more than a passing resemblance to that of the Saudi Arabian national team - although United's is supplied by Castore, with Nike manufacturing the KSA one.

Asked about that back in May, Magpies boss Eddie Howe said:

"I'm aware of the criticisms. I think from my perspective it's not something I've had any control over.

"We were very aware when we went to Saudi Arabia that the interest in Newcastle is huge. I know I'm making an assumption here but our kit manufacturers have probably acknowledged that and hence why we've ended up where we are."

Old boy:
Madman returns

Following previous stints on the island as both a player and manager, Temuri Ketsbaia has been appointed as the new national team coach of Cyprus.

Elsewhere this week, Darlington have secured SJP old boy Marcus Maddison. Playing in League One for Bolton Wanderers 18 months ago, the 28 year-old midfielder previously announced that he was leaving full time football in order to become an online gamer.

Meanwhile Northern League First Division Side West Allotment Celtic signed ex-Magpie Michael Chopra.

Now aged 38, the last senior sighting we noted was an unsuccessful trial at Hartlepool United in 2017 - coming after stints playing in Scotland and India.

Fellow SJP old boy Guy Bates turned out for West Allotment last season at the age of 36 - his brother Jay is the manager. 

Ex-Magpies with new clubs include:

Tom Allan
Jak Alnwick (Cardiff City)
Kieren Aplin
Michael Chopra
(West Allotment Celtic)
Fraser Forster
Nathan Harker
Mackenzie Heaney
(South Shields)
Jack Hunter (FC Halifax Town)
Temuri Ketsbaia
(Cyprus Mgr)
Darren Lough
Oisin McEntee (Walsall)
Marcus Maddison
Alex Nicholson (Blyth Spartans)
Michael Richardson
(Blyth Spartans)
Henri Saivet
Mo Sangare (Accrington Stanley)
Callum Smith (Birtley Town)
Jon Dahl Tomasson (Blackburn Rovers Mgr)

SJP old boys now without a club:

Sammy Ameobi
Andy Carroll
(West Bromwich Albion)
Papiss Cisse (
Caykur Rizespor)
Mo Diame
Carl Finnigan
(Morpeth Town)
Paul Huntington (Preston North End)
Peter Lovenkrands (Fremad Mgr)
Neil McDonald
(Barrow Asst Mgr)
Mark McGhee (Dundee Mgr)
Alan Pardew (CSKA Sofia Mgr)
Stuart Pearce (West Ham C)
Steve Watson
(Chester FC Mgr)

ST sell-out confirmed

Tuesday morning saw an unspecified number of NUFC season tickets (claimed to be 1,000*) placed on sale to fans with a box office purchase history since July 2019.

Available only online, demand was predictably heavy, NUFC confirming at 11.30am that all tickets were sold "in just over an hour".

Those placed in the random queuing system at 10am reported up to 30,000 others in a similar situation - although it's impossible to know quite how many of those were due to duplicate logons.

* although never officially confirmed by NUFC, that 1,000 place figure was widely reported by local and national media and as we understand, accurate.

The motivation for only releasing that amount of seats looks to be at least partly to minimise disruption in the event of changes to the existing seating layout.

In other words, there's theoretical capacity for ST holders who end up displaced by redevelopment to be temporarily or permanently re-sited - be it for safe standing areas or something else.

We're also unsure what the current Premier League stance on accommodating away fans is; with the previous NUFC administration able to deflect attempts at opening up areas pitchside to travelling supporters due to the stadium design.   

And while the clamour for season tickets is matched by dissatisfaction from those who missed out for whatever reason, capping the number sold does at least offer some hope to those aiming to purchase individual match tickets - although the days of a public sale for league games look to be over.

Let's just recall for a moment what was making the news on December 9th 2019, the now-infamous 10,000 SJP seat giveaway. How times change....

Newcastle United is offering its current season ticket holders a FREE additional half-season ticket as the club looks to get a packed St. Jamesí Park behind the team.

After discussions between head coach Steve Bruce and managing director Lee Charnley, subject to eligibility criteria, the Magpies will gift a half-season ticket to qualifying nominees by existing season ticket holders on a first-come first-served basis.

Saudi shirt sleeve
sponsor unveiled

Monday saw Newcastle confirm their new shirt sleeve sponsor, in the shape of Saudi Arabian e-commerce firm,

Seen as the main rival to Amazon in the Middle East, noon was established in 2016 with help from investors including NUFC backers PIF, who have since providing further financing to aid their expansion.

There had been recent speculation that the Botswana tourist board were set to acquire the sleeve rights that were last held by travel search engine KAYAK.

PS: This isn't noon's first association with Premier League football clubs, having become "the official online business partner in the Middle East" of Manchester City in 2021. 

Collector's corner:
Programme fair
this Sunday

This coming Sunday (July 3rd) sees the North East Summer Programme and Memorabilia Fair staged in North Shields.

Running from 10.30am until 2.30pm, a range of dealers will be on hand selling rare and recent programmes, team sheets, books, match tickets, photos, badges, trading cards and other collectables.

Venue: Tynemouth Scouts HQ
31-35 Norfolk Street
North Shields
NE30 1NQ

Nearest Metro: North Shields

Further details:

Pope makes pilgrimage

Following the permanent acquisition of Matt Targett, Newcastle have confirmed their second signing of the summer in the shape of Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope.

The 30 year-old England international was seen at St. James' Park on Thursday as he completed the formalities of his medical before joining Eddie Howe's squad on a four year contract for a claimed £10m fee.

Pope was in the final year of his deal at Turf Moor and unwilling to drop into the Championship, while the Clarets had a pressing need to bolster their squad and meet debt repayments.

He arrives to provide competition for Martin Dubravka, days after United finalised the sale of Freddie Woodman to Preston North End and with the future of Karl Darlow yet to be determined.

What was Pope's 141st and final PL game for Burnley saw beaten twice by Callum Wilson during Newcastle's 2-1 win in Lancashire back in May - a result that condemned them to relegation.

Released by Ipswich Town at the age of 16, the Cambridgeshire-born 'keeper was playing for non-league Bury Town when Charlton Athletic took him on trial in 2011.

Loan spells at Cambridge United, Aldershot, York City and Bury followed before establishing himself as first choice for the Addicks during 2015/16.

The following season saw Pope sold to Burnley, debuting against Crystal Palace in September 2017. A first senior outing for England followed against Costa Rica the following June. 

The Borrowers:
Loan lads

Rodrigo Vilca (Universitario)
Our man appeared as a 77th minute sub on Sunday as his current club lost 0-2 at Sport Huancayo in the Primera Division.

Isaac Hayden (Norwich City)
The Canaries kick off their pre-season preparations on Friday night at local league side Dereham Town.

Gig giveaway

This year's Hardwick Festival in County Durham takes place over the weekend of Saturday August 20th/21st and boasts the usual eclectic line-up of live music, plus separate arenas for House and Soul DJs.

Among those appearing are Stereophonics, The Specials, The Proclaimers and Seasick Steve while the DJ line-up includes Huey Morgan and Arielle Free.

More details/tickets online here

We had separate pairs of tickets for both the Saturday and Sunday shows and asked which football club The Reid brothers aka the Proclaimers supported.

Multitudes of you correctly responded that it was Hibernian* and the winners were:

Stuart McKinnon
Sean Heslop

* nine misguided souls went for Hearts.... 

Home again

For the sixth time in seven top flight seasons, Newcastle begin their Premier League season on home territory, facing newly-promoted Nottingham Forest.

That game will take place on Saturday August 6th with a 3pm kick-off and won't be shown live on UK TV.

Find the 2022/23 fixture list
online here

Considering rearrangements for opponents in European competition, Manchester United's Europa League Group Stage commitments mean that our visit to Old Trafford won't be on a Saturday.

West Ham's progress from the Europa Conference League Playoffs to the Group Stage would also preclude our game at the London Stadium in September from going ahead on a Saturday. 






Season 2022/23

New season ticket cards will be produced for the 2022/23 season.

The £30 adult price cap for PL away tickets has been extended for an additional three seasons.

Fri 01.07.2022 Pre-season training commences.

Sat 09.07.2022 Gateshead (h)
@ Darsley Park, KO tbc. Friendly. Behind Closed Doors - no public access.

Fri 15.07.2022 1860 Munich (n) @ Saalfelden Arena, 6pm. Friendly.
Ticket sale details awaited.

Mon 18.07.2022 Mainz 05 (n) @ Kufstein Arena, 5pm. Friendly. Ticket sale details awaited.

Tue 26.07.2022 Benfica (Portugal) (a)
@ Estadio da Luz, 8pm. Friendly.
Ticket sale details awaited.

Fri 29.07.2022 Atalanta (Italy) (h)
@ SJP, 7.45pm. Friendly.
Ticket sale Tue 05.07.2022.
NB: No Metros between St James and Tynemouth for this game (full line closure from 16.07.2022 onwards).

Sat 30.07.2022 Athletic Bilbao (Spain) (h)
@ SJP, 3pm. Friendly.
Ticket sale Tue 05.07.2022.
NB: Metro service is due to resume between St James and Tynemouth for this game.

Sat 06.08.2022 Nottingham Forest (h)
@ SJP, 3pm. Premier League. Ticket details tbc.

Mon 14.11.2022
PL season halts.

Mon 26.12.2022
PL season restarts.

Sun 28.05.2023 PL season ends.

NUFC Live on TV:
None currently scheduled.

Amazon Prime will show the PL fixture rounds that include the following NUFC games - dates and KOs are yet to be finalised:

Oct 2022 Everton (h)
Dec 2022 Leicester City (a)

Live TV confirmation dates:  
all "approximate dates"

Tue 05.07.2022
Oct Fri 29.07.2022
Nov Tue 13.09.2022
Dec/Jan Tue 11.10.2022
Feb Tue 06.12.2022
Mar Wed 25.01.2023
MW35 Thu 23.03.2023
MW36 Thu 30.03.2023
MW37 Thu 07.04.2023
MW38 after 20.05.2023

Carabao Cup Round dates:
(NUFC enter in Round 2)

R2: w/c Mon 22.08.2022
w/c Mon 07.11.2022
w/c Mon 19.12.2022
w/c Mon 09.01.2023
SF1: w/c Mon 23.01.2023
SF2: w/c Mon 30.01.2023
F: Sun 26.02.2023 (Wembley)

FA Cup Round dates:
(NUFC enter in Round 3)

R3: Sat 07.01.2023
R4: Sat 28.01.2023
R5: Wed 01.03.2023
QF: Sat 18.03.2023
SF: Sat 22.04.2023
F: Sat 03.06.2023 (Wembley)

Papa Johns Trophy dates:

NUFC U21s enter Northern Group E, with Barnsley, Doncaster Rovers and Lincoln City.

GS1 w/c Mon 29.08.2022
GS2 w/c Mon 19.09.2022
GS3 w/c Mon 17.10.2022
R2: w/c Mon 28.11.2022
R3: w/c Mon 12.12.2022
QF: w/c Mon 09.01.2023
SF: w/c Mon 30.01.2023
F: Sun 19.03.2023 (Wembley)

Other events @ SJP:

Rugby League Magic Weekend:

Sat 09.07.2022:
Wakefield v Toulouse (2.30pm)
St Helens v Wigan (4.45pm)
Leeds v Castleford Tigers (7pm)

Sun 10.07.2022:
Huddersfield v Salford (1pm)
Catalans v Warrington (3.15pm)
Hull FC v Hull KR (5.30pm)

Rugby League WC Finals:

Sat 15.10.2022:
England v Samoa (2.30pm)


International Magpies
National Service

International breaks: 

21.11.2022-18.12.2022 (WCF)
Coxy's Corner

Whoops, He did it Again...

What's this all about then?
Click here for a rambling explanation of sorts....


On This Day in History
30th June

Born Or Died:

1876 Andy McCombie born, Inverness. (1904-50 player & trainer)

Scottish international full back who began his career and Inverness Thistle and moved from the mackems to SJP in February 1904 at a cost of £700.

Making his debut in a 4-1 home victory over Notts County, Andy added Division One Championship medals in 1905 and 1907 to the one he'd won at Roker Park in 1902.

Also playing in United's losing FA Cup Final visits to Crystal Palace in 1905 & 1906, he
was to lose his first team place during the 1907/08 season, only appearing four times in the following two campaigns.

As a result Andy wasn't involved in the 1908 and 1910 FA Cup Finals and also missed out on another Championship medal in 1909.

Played his final game for the Magpies in April 1910, he was to remain at the club for the next 40 years in various off-field roles.

Retiring in 1950, he passed away some two years later, while living in North Shields.


What Else?

1971 Newcastle's Benny Arentoft won his ninth and final cap for Denmark as they were beaten 3-1 in Copenhagen by West Germany.

Argentina faced England in St.Etienne in a World Cup Second Round tie, with United's Alan Shearer scoring from the spot for 1-1.

Future Magpie Michael Owen then restored England's advantage with a memorable goal before the Argies levelled once more and David Beckham was dismissed.

Extra time then came and went and penalties were required to settle the tie, with both Shearer and Owen converting from the spot.

Finally with the score at 4-3 to Argentina, Newcastle's David Batty strode up and saw his inept effort saved - later revealing that he'd never even taken one at club level. 

2000 Talk of a return to SJP for Lee Clark resurfaced while other report claimed an interest in Schalke 04 striker Emile Mpenza.

Meanwhile, the Save our Seats (SOS) campaign lost their appeal against the club who had moved bond-holding season ticket holders to accommodate corporate clients.

2003 Free agent Lee Bowyer finally had his medical and became a Newcastle player.

2004 Real Madrid-bound United defender Jonathan Woodgate featured in The Sun newspaper after reportedly glassing himself in a beach bar in Ibiza....

2004 It was still to be officially confirmed but we had it on good authority that James Milner and Nicky Butt were about to sign.

2005 United boss Graeme Souness denied reports of interest in signing former mackem plank Tore Andre Flo from Siena.

Said GS: "There is no truth in it whatsoever."

Speculation elsewhere that we were tracking Inter Milan forward Christian Vieri proved to be equally fictitious.

2008 Joey Barton's third court appearance of the year (all for different offences) saw him change his plea to guilty in response to the ABH charge on former Manchester City team mate Ousmane Dabo.

2014 In Brasilia, a France side featuring Mathieu Debuchy beat Nigeria 2-0 to set up a Quarter Final tie against Germany. 

Former Magpie Yohan Cabaye started and struck the crossbar with one rasping effort from outside the box. Moussa Sissoko meanwhile dropped out of the starting XI but was belatedly introduced on 94 minutes.

Fellow old boy Shola Ameobi remained unused for the Super Eagles - ending his World Cup campaign after two substitute appearances and no hint of a goal.

2021 Former Newcastle Manager Rafa Benitez was confirmed as the new boss of Everton, agreeing a three year deal at Goodison Park.

An appointment dividing Toffees fans would prove to be ill-advised, with the Spaniard relieved of his post the following January after a dramatic downturn in results.