In 2009, Newcastle United was sent down to the English Championship, despite being a mainstay in England's top flight for 16 seasons in the Premier League era. Five years later and despite spending upwards of £80 million in the transfer market, Newcastle has, once again, been relegated.
Both Newcastle and Norwich City had their fates confirmed Wednesday following Sunderland's 3-0 win over Everton at the Stadium of Light, and Newcastle's managing director Lee Charnley issued a statement to the club's heartbroken fans promising further explanation upon the conclusion of the season.
"Tonight we are devastated at our relegation from the Premier League, as I know every single person connected to this football club will be," Charnley wrote on the club's official website. "I want to thank all of the fans for the support you have shown for the club you love throughout the season, in spite of this massive disappointment and underachievement.
"Your support throughout has been magnificent, but I want to pay particular thanks for the incredible backing you have given to (manager) Rafa (Benitez) and the team during the latter part of the season. Nothing more could be asked of you and I am truly sorry we have not given you the outcome you deserve."
Fans at St. James' Park will need to endure one final fixture as second-placed Tottenham visits on the last match day, but afterward, Charnley promised supporters the club will evaluate what went wrong and begin work on a return to the Premier League.
"The process of scrutinising what went wrong and planning for what is to come has already begun," Charnley said. "Right now, of course, Rafa and the team must prepare for the final game of the season but after that, please rest assured we will communicate more fully with supporters."
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