As the Newcastle 11 lined up at St James’ Park before kickoff against Brentford, a familiar cheer rang throughout the venue.
The elation and excitement has been present at Tyneside since the beginning of the season and has only escalated as games have gone by.
The Magpies have lost just once in 9 games and currently are in firm contention for a European berth.
Reaching this point has been a long and arduous journey for the famous club, as no more than a year ago, the side were in turmoil.
Financial struggles off the pitch and grim displays on it meant that Newcastle were in heaps of trouble.
And then, the Saudis entered the scene.
A consortium consisting of PCP Capital Partners, Reuben Brothers and the PIF launched a bid to buy Newcastle United.
And eventually, in early October it was formalized, and the club was finally free from the clutches of Mike Ashely.
In the period that has followed Newcastle has undergone quite the makeover.
A new gaffer in charge, new transfer policies, and of course, some cracking new players. All this and more have landed the Newcastle faithful on cloud nine.
And as you may have guessed, they adore the new owners quite a bit.
The game against Brentford marked the 1 year anniversary of the takeover, and to celebrate the occasion, the Toon army unfurled a brand new banner.
Dedicated to the new owners, it showed off some images from the takeover, including a picture of club executive Amanda Staveley.
Thematically, the tifo referenced a Sky Sports broadcast and even featured the channel’s signature yellow ticker.
Even personnel changes were incorporated into the banner, as it included the list of transfer incomings so far and the notable departure of Mike Ashely.
Newcastle fans online loved the banner and found it befitting of the occasion.
As for the rest of Football Twitter, the opinions were mixed, to say the least.
Users online found the display to be cringe-worthy, stating that celebrating a takeover is rather short-sighted and unnecessary.
Others related their distaste to the various allegations placed against the Saudi Arabian regime, including the very relevant one of ‘Sportswashing’.
Furthermore, many questioned the content of the banner itself, as displays like these are typically reserved for legends or references to the club’s culture.
Naturally, celebrating a takeover’s anniversary flies straight in the face of that notion.
Of course, the Magpies couldn’t care less about the noise.
The trajectory that the club are headed in will always invite hate, such is the nature of success.
Whatever you may think of the banner, it’s hard to question the new ownership. After all, they’ve given Newcastle a platform to return to the very top.