The talkSPORT pundit described the Magpies chief as having rhino skin as he believes the businessman just brushes everything off.
Saunders then shared the question he has regarding Ashley, as he asked whether the businessman just sees Newcastle as part of his business empire and wondered if he is prepared to make a loss on the club.
“I don’t think he cares what anybody says,” said Saunders on talkSPORT (18:22, Sunday, June 30th).
“I think he just brushes everything off, he has rhino skin.
“He’s not bothered, he has a business empire, Newcastle is just part of it, y’know you have to say is he making money on the club, does he use the squad to promote the other part of his business? His companies.
“Is he using Newcastle as that, just as part of his empire, he is not prepared to take losses.
“If he came on the show now, he’d say do you realise how much money I have put into this football club, if you take over a club don’t expect to make money.
“If you make money it’s a bonus, if you buy a football club you will normally lose money.”
Based on the Magpies’ recent transfer business, surely Saunders knows the answer to his question. Sky Sports previously did a whole article on the financial dealings of the Magpies in August 2018 to highlight how the club were bucking the trend with Premier League spending on the rise. The broadcaster claimed, not counting the January window that was yet to happen, that the Magpies had made a profit with their transfer dealings since Rafa Benitez took charge. During Spanish boss’ reign, the Magpies spent £124million, recouping £64million, which mean they ended up making a £40million. So surely that shows Ashley is not prepared to take losses when it comes to the club? Also, the other reason why Saunders should know that Ashley uses the Magpies to promote his other businesses is the whole previous issue to do with the naming rights of the club’s stadium. Does the pundit not remember when the owner shamelessly oversaw the renaming of St James Park to the Sports Direct Arena, to help showcase sponsorship opportunities? (Source: BBC) While the name was eventually restored, that action alone showed Ashley was capable of using the club for his own gain.