Wed 21 Feb 2024, 10:33 · Ash Harrison

'Genuine anger': Journalist says Newcastle are furious with how the Ashworth saga has unfolded

'Genuine anger': Journalist says Newcastle are furious with how the Ashworth saga has unfolded
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It sounds as though it's not just the Newcastle United fans who are livid with Dan Ashworth right now, apparently those within St James' Park aren't too happy either.

Dan Ashworth is now on gardening leave, again, after the club wasted no time in booting him out after he asked for permission to leave the club last week.

The whole saga has been dragging on for months now with Dan Ashworth touted as the man for Manchester United as soon as Sir Jim Ratcliffe put his money on the table, and that is what is causing the issue.

George Caulkin says Newcastle United bosses are not happy

Business is business and people move jobs every day, that's not the issue, but The Athletic's George Caulkin has said that those in power are fuming at how this has all played out.

Speaking on the Pod on the Tyne podcast, Caulkin has said that Dan Ashworth doesn't come out of this looking very good.

“There is genuine anger at Newcastle about the way this has…I mean all is fair in love and war but it’s been a very, very public approach, or courtship without making an official approach.

“It’s been lingering on for months. I don’t think Ashworth has handled himself well in this, I have to say. I don’t think he comes out of this well. Only really admitting that he had contact as of last week then telling the club he wants to leave. It’s very early into his task at Newcastle, and, although there have been complications behind the scenes, I don’t think it’s been easy from either side, I don’t think he comes out of this very well.”

Rinse them for every penny, Mandy!

As Caulkin alluded to there, it doesn't feel like Newcastle and Ashworth were a good fit with the former Brighton man not being granted as much control as he was expecting, but there are better ways to resolve the issue than taking secret phone calls about a new job and then trying to force an exit.

The big stumbling block now is that Man United don't want to pay the reported £20million to buy Ashworth out of his Newcastle contract, but given that they've tapped him up for months behind our back, I don't see Amanda Staveley and Co being too flexible on this. The two clubs don't have the best relationship to begin with *cough* Jesse Lingard loan fee *cough*, so the Magpies chiefs have every right to dig their heels in.

I don't think there'd be much sympathy from anyone in and around Newcastle if Ashworth had to serve out the entirety of his gardening leave before joining up with Manchester United in 2026. I know I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

Amanda Staveley and Eddie Howe
Serena Taylor via Getty Images
"Dan Ashworth is a snake. Pass it on"