April 18, 2024

Alan Pardew believes Newcastle United will face a major problem if they lose Dan Ashworth to Manchester United.

Newcastle placed their Sporting Director on gardening leave earlier this week after he expressed his desire to join Manchester United and their new backers.

Former Newcastle manager Pardew stated on talkSPORT that Newcastle will have a ‘issue’ if Ashworth leaks their secrets to a rival Premier League club.

Losing Ashworth will be huge blow for Newcastle

Newcastle are not only losing one of the best sporting directors in the game, as seen by his prior success at Brighton, England, and West Brom, but their opponents are gaining a valuable asset.

Newcastle has competed directly with Manchester United for a European spot both this season and previous, with the Red Devils finishing third last year and Newcastle finishing fourth.

They are still in contention for the top four, but are more likely to be in and around the Europa League slots, so giving them an advantage in Ashworth is the last thing they want to do.

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Newcastle are dissatisfied not only with Ashworth’s football knowledge and understanding of how a club should operate, but also with the fact that he may now go and share their secrets with his new employers, albeit not for another 20 months.

On the show, Pardew mentioned Dan Ashworth. It’s a dilemma for Eddie Howe because they’ve put all of these things in place, and Newcastle’s ownership clearly has a plan, whether it’s a five-year plan or anything.

“All those secrets Dan knows and he’ll be taking them across the water.”

Newcastle are playing the long game

According to Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s most recent comments, Manchester United are already growing impatient that Newcastle will not simply roll over and give them Ashworth as soon as possible.

Newcastle can keep him on gardening leave for the next 20 months, which means he won’t be able to work during the transfer window until January 2026.

They could, of course, pay the £20 million compensation money, but Manchester United are unlikely to buckle, whereas Newcastle are clearly determined to play the long game rather than drop their demands.

While Manchester United fans may grumble that it is not in the spirit of the game, Newcastle is finally acting like a big club, refusing to be pushed around and bullied like they have in the past.

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