Well, okay maybe not gutted like many other Newcastle fans, but it’s still pretty weird that Newcastle are going down for 09/10. I can’t claim a life long love of all things Newcastle, but I did adopt them as my team a few years back and I never believed that they would be on the chopping block. It is also a cruel irony that one of the things I love about European soccer is the relegation scenario. Basically, the three worst teams get sent down to the next lower league and the best three teams get promoted. The great worry for NUFC is that bouncing back up has become harder and harder the last few years. Also, one of last years demotees, Charlton Athletic are dropping yet another league. This doesn’t particularly bode well for NUFC. Most of their quality players can leave the team because of the demotion and the ones who remain might not be good enough to challenge for promotion next season. Also the caretaker manager is a Newcastle icon, Alan Shearer, but little else. These last eight games are all of the managing experience he has and he didn’t exactly distinguish himself with 1 win, 2 draws and 5 loses. The other big question is: how am I going to watch any Newcastle games unless I pay for Setanta which could be a very hard sell to my wife. A bar just added Setanta near my house, but again, skipping out at 9 AM on a Saturday to watch soccer isn’t going to be easy. Though I wasn’t born into NUFC, over the years I have developed a pretty strong interest in the club and I can’t see deserting them now that things have gotten tough. Another twist of irony, part of the reason I picked them is because they weren’t a super successful club (manchester, liverpool) or a team from London (Chelsea, Arsenal, Totenham, West Ham.) It just felt wrong to begin following soccer and take a frontrunning club or one based in the capital, kind of like choosing the Yankees or Boston if I were just coming to baseball. Nope I chose an industrial town, far to the north as the team for me. It didn’t hurt that they had the same colors as the White Sox. So, for all of that deliberation, I’m going down with my team. ugh.