The Newcastle United Fans' Forum (Club Approved) Meeting Minutes are out, but if you were hoping for any kind of stunning insight into the running of the club or the philosophies and ambitions of the club, you will be disappointed. In a splendid exhibition of the Law of Diminishing Returns, each successive FF meeting seems to yield less information and fewer real answers, while the answers that were given reaffirmed very restrictive policies that have affected the club negatively this season.
Perhaps the most frustrating example of this was in the second question addressed during the "Fans' Questions" portion of the meeting. Regarding the transfer of Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa to Roma, the club confessed to as much.
"In relation to Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, the board reiterated its view from the previous Forum meeting: the deal was in the best interests of both parties and the player has proven to be better suited to Serie A.
The board confirmed that it had pursued its first choice defensive targets in summer 2014 and had reached a verbal agreement with a player. The deal involving Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa took far longer than anticipated and the target subsequently moved to another club before it could be concluded.
A verbal agreement was made with a defender. The club couldn't shift Yanga-Mbiwa, so instead of buying on speculation, they preferred to keep shopping the Frenchman around while not bringing in any center defender of any sort at any time. Got it.
Other highlights from the meeting included apportionment of blame for the press-ban situation regarding The Chronicle and The Journal onto "a few vocal fans" whose "pressure" resulted in forcing the newspapers (now fully back within the good graces of the club) to write Very Naughty Things about the club. So we are costing the club results (per Alan Pardew) and getting the press banned. Some fan base.
It wasn't all frustrating news, though. The club did confirm that if the day were to come that the squad were to consistently finish in 8th place in the Premier League, the board would then reassess their future targets to potentially include 6th place. Yay!
Anyway, the link from the quote above will take you to a complete transcript of the Forum meeting. Read it through and let us know how it makes you feel. The couch is open.