The three letters every Newcastle United fan hates hearing have reared their head again - FFP.
Financial Fair Play regulations are seriously stifling Newcastle's ability to compete after the current owners inherited a club that simply didn't make money. That means that the buffer for spending is about as low as it can go without being in the negative.
It's this ruling that has hamstrung Newcastle in the transfer market since our mega-rich backers kicked the doors in at St James' Park and threw Mike Ashley and his Sports Direct signs into the skip.
It would be wrong to say that Newcastle haven't spent a lot of money since the PIF came in, that's simply not true, but that money we have spent has had to be used very wisely. Bringing in two or three players where ideally we'd be looking at one player for the same value - a superstar who can take us to the next level.
There's a case to be made that says we are going about it the right way, and in a way this is more fun, but when the 'FFP restrictions' are mentioned it makes everyone's butt clench.
January is no different as Eddie Howe has now said he 'hasn't had assurances' on whether he'll be able to spend big in this upcoming window.
Newcastle are in dire need of new faces at the club after our lack of squad depth has been exposed this season through a ton of freak injuries in all areas of the pitch.
It would therefore be handy for Eddie to know what he's got to play with in January and how many players he could realistically bring in to get this season back on track.
There's frustration amongst fans that we are the only side playing by the FFP rules, and while that's far from true, would it be such a bad thing if we were? Imagine that season where all the other sides in the league except us start on -10 points.
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