Toon Army turns its anger on Ashley and the board after Newcastle boss Keegan is sacked

Newcastle supporters revealed their anger and disappointment as news of manager Kevin Keegan's sacking from St James' Park by owner Mike Ashley emerged. 

They rallied to St James' Park to direct their anger at the club's board, with Keegan still appearing to have their unwavering support.  

Keegan returned for a second spell as Newcastle manager in January but was today reported to have parted company with the club after suggestions of a rift between him and the owner Mike Ashley.

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newcastle fans

Outrage: Newcastle United fans demonstrate outside Kevin Keegan's house after the manager was sacked

Frank Gilmour, of the Independent Newcastle United Supporters Association, said: 'It's an absolute farce, you cannot run a football club like this.' 

Keegan walked out on the club in January 1997 when he was manager, citing off-pitch interference when his first spell in charge ended in disappointment.  

Gilmour said: 'This is on a par with what happened 12 years ago. I wouldn't blame Keegan for going whatsoever.' 

john mccririck

McCririck; 'Call for Shearer!'

The horse-racing pundit and Newcastle supporter John McCririck called on owner Ashley to bring Alan Shearer back to the club as manager - and joked that he would fancy a role himself.  

'The only way the Toon Army can unite is with Alan Shearer in charge and myself, along with the ubiquitous racing nut Terry McDermott, as his assistants,' said McCririck.  

'I've always fancied being in the dugout shouting instructions and rallying the players and supporters.  

'The fans on Tyneside need me. When the calls comes I am ready to serve.' 

The Rev Glyn Evans, whose St Andrew's Church is just 200 yards from St James' Park, said: 'I love Keegan and if "The Messiah" has walked then, as a Christian, I am really upset.  

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newcastle fans

Got the message? Newcastle fans show where their sympathies lie

'Someone is calling him elsewhere. There has been so much going on at the club, and he has been trying to keep it together, it has been hell for us.  

'There are some people in the north-east who always felt he was a bottler when things get tough.  

'I don't think so, he just goes when he thinks it is the right thing to do.  

mike ashley

Mike Ashley: target of the fans' fury

'We put up a sign outside the church saying, 'Season's Greetings - We Hope It Will Be a Good One'. Well, it hasn't been so far.'

Former England midfielder Ray Wilkins, who worked with Keegan at Fulham in the late 1990s before being succeeded as manager by his former England team-mate, believes Newcastle had little chance of attracting the highest class of players during the summer.  

Keegan's anticipated exit is thought to relate to the club's transfer policy and the level of influence he has been afforded as manager.  

Wilkins said: 'It is very difficult for clubs outside the big four to attract players because everybody wants to go to a Champions League team.  

'These guys should not move for money, it will be because they want to play against the best.  

'Unfortunately with Newcastle being out of that situation now, they find themselves buying players who are just underneath the top quality.  

'The finance is not really there to keep splashing and splashing.'

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