Sports Direct Arena @

St James' Park119 years on and the title of St James’ Park is to be replaced with a sports goods retailer. How proud we are as supporters to see this surprise thrown at us! Ashley has crossed the line here according to most fans, the naming rights change was all very sudden and was it really called for right now just when the team was doing well and another distraction wasn’t required.

The logic and reasoning behind the move is understandable, a team that is self sufficient and holding its own financially, while moving forward is much more appealing than the financial shambles that existed previously.

The potential from a new shirt sponsor coupled with a stadium endorsement deal could prove to be the catalyst for this club moving forward and staking a claim for a top six berth year in year out. Then again, the name of St James’ Park is a large part of the history of this club, holding personal memories for many NUFC fans, and removing that name can not be justified at any price.

For the Magpies to compete with Manchester United, Man City or Chelsea in a financial sense is not plausible, however being able to out muscle Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal has more potential. If Mike Ashley delivers on a strong sponsorship deal for the stadium, that ends up benefiting the team, then possibly this move is justified. However if it remains as the Sports Direct Arena and Northern Rock is replaced by Sport Direct (Northern Rock having ended their sponsorship deal early with NUFC) and the team are renamed Sports Direct United @ Newcastle United FC then we have an issue!

For now the jury is out on the move, but lets hope Ashley can come up with the goods and prove once again he is not just a round man with lots of money but rather a clever chairman who wants to see a financially stable football club back where it belongs.

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About the Author: James P Mahon

James is a former radio Dj with Party 934 & Flirt FM 101.3 in Ireland & has TV presented with News2day on RTE 2 as well as the recent documentary Dingle to LA. He was a writer for Sin newspaper and the Chesterfield Post and is general manager of record label COAL Records Ltd for Tribal Talent Ireland. As well as being a die hard magpie he also writes regularly to and hosts an online chat show on He is currently studying a masters in broadcast journalism at the University of Sheffield and has appeared as a guest on BBC Radio, Blogtalkradio NYC and ForgeRadio: Twitter= @jamesPmahon

1 Comment + Add Comment

  • Name change is a complete disgrace, shows complete lack of respect not just to the fans (as mike ashley has always done) but also to the city & the citys history. St.James Park is an iconic part of Newcastle 119 years suddenly changed, its disgusting. Petition to fight name change – sign & pass of please…

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