Newcastle Rename St James’ Park With Immediate Effect – Now Play At ‘Sports Direct Arena’

Chris Wright

10th, November 2011

13 Comments

By Chris Wright

With Newcastle riding high in the Premier League, the cynic in me suggests that Mike Ashley may have bided his time to announce that St James’ Park is to be renamed with ‘immediate effect’ as an exercise in PR damage limitation but there we go – from henceforth, the Toon’s ground will be officially listed as the ‘Sports Direct Arena’.

Last season the stadium’s official title was altered to include the club’s sponsors (remember the SportsDirect.com@StJamesPark?) and not much really changed. Everybody still referred to it ‘St James’ Park and, after 120 years under the name, the ground is always going to be just that to the fans – regardless of it’s commercial moniker. Dunnae worry like.

There’s been outcry this morning, some genuine, some feigned – but the important factor is that it’ll be the ‘Sports Direct Arena’ every time it’s mentioned on television in the lucrative foreign markets. That’s all.

According to director Derek Llambias, the naming rights will also be put up for grabs at the end of the season, so you won’t have to get overly used to the new name. Next year, fingers crossed, we may have Newcastle running out at the ‘Anusol Arena’ or the ‘Bodyform Stadium’ (hopefully while that jingle plays over the PA System and Fabio Coloccini ruffles his hair in slow motion)

Before any jilted Toon supporters go defecating through Ashley’s letterbox, remember it’s just a marketing thing. An increasingly necessary evil to keep clubs like Newcastle in the Premier League’s increasingly affluent rear view mirror.

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13 Comments

  1. KINGB3113 says:

    Haha I thought the exact same thing. This name change couldn’t have come at a better time for Mr. Ashley

  2. Davy says:

    Next year, fingers crossed, we may have Newcastle running out at the ‘Anusol Arena’ or the ‘Bodyform Stadium’

    @ Chris…WTF with the above comment? Hate Newcastle do we? For what reason? Why not rename Stamford bridge the above?

  3. Si says:

    Davy, come back when you’ve stopped menstruating. It was clearly a joke.

  4. newcassel says:

    St James Park nuff said

  5. __wowza says:

    the wiki article says it the best:

    “St James’ Park, known for sponsorship reasons as the Sports Direct Arena”

    know, and only know, as sports direct arena for sponsorship reasons.

  6. CMYK says:

    I’m not calling it that. I’m not even a Newcastle fan, but I’m not calling it that.

  7. Calski says:

    I’m a newcsatle fan, and I can understand the need for a name change. If we are going to become self sufficient this is a fantastic way to do so and If it brought in a new No9 (Maybe even Andy Carroll back :D ) I’d be more than up for it. My grievance, however, is that it’s Ashley’s Company. So it’s not going to bring in any extra cash, it’s simply going out of one of Ashley’s pockets to the other.

  8. Hobbes says:

    remember it’s just a marketing thing.

    As nufc.com points out, what if the new sponsors want us to play in a red and blue home kit because that is what kids in foreign markets like? What if a sponsor can pony up enough cash to rename the team, i.e. Newcastle Red Bulls? At point are you selling the team’s proverbial soul?
    For the record, I am all for selling the naming rights to the stadium. Everybody 15 years old and up will call it St. James till they die. Also, make it a beer sponsor. Beer is cool and underage kids will by that merchandise for that reason alone

    Was there a big uproar when sponsors were slapped on to the jerseys way back when? I think that is more of an affront, because it is your (the team’s) colors.

  9. Papi says:

    Ha!

    @ Davy,

    U mad, bro?

  10. ChrisT says:

    Davy get over it man, it’s just a joke. Personally I hope we get sponsored by the Wank Boarding Company in Australia and play at the Wank Arena.

  11. Iksee says:

    This article oofends me as I had to buy Anusol today….

  12. Mr. Sparkle says:

    It’s still St. James Park.

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