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Mike Ashley has done a lot of damage to the Newcastle fanbase. While numbers are still reasonably good at home games, this masks underlying problems.
A large number of long time supporters, people who have held tickets for decades, have stopped attending matches. These fans have suffered through terrible times in the past, so it is not the lack of success on the pitch that has driven them away.
The constant bad decisions that have characterised the Mike Ashley years, from the sackings of Keegan and Hughton to the sale of Carroll and Barton, have caused many to take a stand. These fans seem unlikely to return while Ashley is still in charge.
The other issue is that the fanbase is now very divided. Several attempts to put together a fan group to speak to the supporters have been plagued by division and politics. Optimists and realist are often at each other's throats on Internet chat rooms and forums.
This season another split has development due to the club's decision to dissolve the level seven "singing section". This pocket of vocal, and mainly young, fans were housed in the top corner of the stadium near the away fans.
The club decided this summer to expand the family enclosure at the expense of the singing section. Large numbers of these fans decided to relocate to the Gallowgate corner.
This area had been the home to the most vocal and rowdy members of the crowd in the eighties and early nighties, when the Gallowgate end was still terracing.
Unfortunately, having recently been a relatively sedate part of the stadium, the influx of a large number of very vocal supporters who barely sit down during the match has caused friction. This has led to sizable numbers of fans being ejected from the stadium, and a huge amount of unhappiness amongst both original and new members of the Gallowgate corner.