Claire Rafferty shared that she didn’t think Newcastle United were a big club and many Magpies supporters will likely take umbrage with her verdict.
The retired women’s footballer, she announced she was hanging up her boots in May (Source: Official West Ham website), was on talkSPORT alongside Simon Jordan, Shaun Custis and Danny Kelly on Monday when Newcastle United’s manager hunt was being discussed.
Kelly questioned what was going on at the Magpies as he felt that as a big club they would have attracted a manager and sorted one out by now following Rafa Benitez’s exit, and Rafferty chimed in to suggest they weren’t a big club.
“Cause it’s not a big club,” said Rafferty on talkSPORT (21:23, Monday July 8th).
The former West Ham defender laughed after saying that, but then was directly asked how big a club Newcastle United were.
“In my opinion, not so big, but how do you define a big club?” stated the retired footballer.
Many Newcastle fans will surely take umbrage with this remark as it can be easily argued that the Magpies are a big club.
For example, Gary Neville when calling the Magpies one of the biggest clubs in the country in April on Sky, as transcribed by the Chronicle, something Jamie Carragher disagreed with, highlighted the club’s fanbase.
Newcastle United had the 7th highest home attendance in the Premier League in the 2018/19 campaign with them filling 97.7% of their stadium across the 19 league games they hosted. (Source: Transfermarkt)
The only team that was higher than them, that wasn’t in the top-six, was West Ham and it’s worth noting they only filled 97.2% of their stadium across their outings and were aided by having a larger ground than the Magpies to play in.
While the Magpies’ trophy success, maybe a distant memory; it doesn’t mean they don’t have a long illustrious history filled with silverware-winning moments, after all, they have won six FA Cups. (Source: Newcastle United’s official website)
Also, the Magpies may have dropped down to the Championship in recent memory, briefly, and been happy with finishing 10th and 13th in the league under Rafa Benitez, but that doesn’t take away from their size, it just means they’re not going through a good spell right now.
After Manchester United finished sixth last season? Should questions be asked about their ‘size’ if they finish in a similar position once again in the coming campaign? Or the campaign after that? No, that would be silly.
So with that mind, many Newcastle fans will take umbrage over Raffety’s remarks, as most would be willing to disagree with her over how she views their club.