FURIOUS Chinese Newcastle fans held up “Ashley Out” placards during today’s pre-season friendly against Wolves.
Club supporters are fuming after Steve Bruce has been unveiled as new Toon Army boss, replacing Rafa Benitez.
Former Sunderland manager Bruce has left Sheffield Wednesday to pen a three-year contract with Newcastle.
The Tyneside outfit had to pay the Owls £4million in compensation after Bruce and his staff had walked out even before their resignation was accepted.
But Toon Army fans were hardly convinced by Mike Ashley’s appointment and made their feelings known about the club’s hated owner during a pre-season friendly in China.
They were seen holding up placard showing the Sport Direct tycoon’s face with his eyes covered by a censor bar – demanding him out of St James’ Park.
Newcastle cut a miserable figure at the Nanjing Olympic Stadium, suffering an embarrassing 4-0 loss in the Premier League Asia Trophy clash against Wolves.
Meanwhile, Toon Army supporters are convinced they are heading for the drop – and even got hashtag “#BruceOut” trending on Twitter shortly after Bruce’s announcement.
And a fan group Empty for Ashley have called for a boycott of the club’s Premier League season opener against Arsenal on August 11.
It’s member Joe Halliday said: “Steve Bruce is an unambitious appointment by an unambitious owner.
most read in football
“To go from a world-class manager in Rafa Benitez, who brought stability and unity to the club – to Steve Bruce, who frankly wouldn’t get a job at any other Premier League side right now, in the space of six weeks is beyond disappointing.”
“In Bruce, Mike Ashley has opted for a manager who has been relegated from the league numerous times, he isn’t even a safe pair of hands.
“Bruce’s appointment is testament to Ashley’s mis-management of Newcastle United Football Club for over ten years and it’s time for him to sell the club to a party that genuinely wants to take the club forward.”