Fans furious by Mike Ashley’s statement over Sports Direct, so much so that Jeff Stelling wants police to take action against him.
The owner of the Premier League side Newcastle United refused to all of his stores across the country after Boris Johnson’s speech on Monday evening.
The PM has said that all non-essential shops are to close.
Nonetheless, employees of Sports Direct have received this email tonight. Its management has decided they are an essential service (as they supply exercise equipment) so as things stand will be staying open… pic.twitter.com/GfvVIY9luD
— Lewis Goodall (@lewis_goodall) March 23, 2020
The Prime Minister put forward a range of more stringent moves to try and minimise the spread and reduce the number of people who fall ill, with many potentially dying.
Boris ordered that only ‘essential’ shops should stay open and in an attempt to exploit a ‘grey area’, Ashley however wants his Sports Direct stores open, claiming they are ‘essential’ because ‘we are uniquely well placed to help keep the UK as fit and healthy as possible during this crisis.’
Along with the rest of the general public, Jeff Stelling called out Mike Ashley for putting greed ahead of the safety and health.
He said: “Seriously tried to stay quiet but for Sports Direct to say they are essential and will stay open is a disgrace. It helps jeopardise all of us. I suggest the police should enforce closure if every shop like this and there should be huge penalties against them for taking the piss. And you know what Sports Direct and everyone else. I am 65. I am scared. I want to be able to present Soccer Saturday in future. Please stop. Please do what you are asked. Just close down, stay home. Ok?”
The message to Frasers Group (formerly Sports Direct Group) staff read last night: “We stock a huge range of sports equipment for exercising at home from yoga mats, gym balls, skipping ropes, weights, indoor and outdoor trampolines, resistance bands through to bikes, treadmills, rowing machines, static exercise bikes, multigyms, fitness clothing and footwear in order for people to remain fit and healthy during this period of isolation, indeed home fitness is the number one trending topic on social media after coronavirus itself.
“Against the backdrop of the closure of gyms the demand for these types of products has increased exponentially as the population looks to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
“Consequently, we are uniquely well placed to help keep the UK as fit and healthy as possible during this crisis and thus our Sports Direct and Evans Cycles stores will remain open where possible to allow us to do this (in accordance with the Government’s current social distancing guidance).
“There is no one else that has the range of product and range of stores to make this reasonably accessible for the whole population.”
After being told to close by the Government on Tuesday morning, Sports Direct have since confirmed they will not open its stores to the public in a surprisingly quick u-turn by the sportswear retailer.
Fans have been left furious by Mike Ashley’s statement…
Mike Ashley claiming that his Sport Direct staff are key workers proves that he values money over human life. If you were ever in doubt over the man’s morals, this settles it. When this is over, I hope the nation as a whole boycott his companies into bankruptcy.
— HLTCO (@HLTCO) March 24, 2020
By refusing to close its shops, #SportsDirect has declared that money is more important than life.
So please send Mike Ashley the only message he understands, by pledging never again to give him your money.
— George Monbiot (@GeorgeMonbiot) March 24, 2020
Woke up this morning with the overwhelming feeling I needed to go out and buy a pair of cheap Donnay white sports socks, lucky Sports Direct is open for these essentials! ??Mike Ashley close your stores you idiot, you’re putting your staff and the public at risk! #SportsDirect
— Richard Shaw (@RichardS7370) March 24, 2020
It's easy, just make Mike Ashley pay on the other side of this.
Businesses to avoid at all costs post #COVIDー19 so far:
– Sports Direct
– Britannia Hotels
Show them the same contempt they have shown others at the most difficult time.
— Macca 3.0 (@McB00merang) March 23, 2020
— ToonFan (@ToonFan14) March 23, 2020
Cant get married
Cant say goodbye to a dying parent
Cant visit the family
But you can buy Slazenger golf balls and Donnay socks at Sports Direct
— Just Some Lad (@SomeEvertonFan) March 24, 2020
As a Newcastle fan I'm aware of how big a twat Mike Ashley is, but to declare Sports Direct an 'Essential service' seriously Mike, NHS staff are risking their lives day after day for us & all you care about is protecting your personal fortune….FUCK YOU PRICK ??#COVIDIDIOTS pic.twitter.com/KIthpkl6qL
— Laura (@lspark89) March 23, 2020
Wetherspoons not paying staff!
Sports direct staying open risking their staff's health and wellbeing!
Companies expect employee loyalty?
Its NOW the staff need you! You all you make millions even billions in profits… LOOK AFTER YOUR STAFF
— Citylightz (@citylightzmusic) March 24, 2020
Mike Ashley checking his texts from the Sports Direct staff this morning. https://t.co/V4endTWFSI
— Bradley Brocklehurst (@Bradley_1605) March 24, 2020
Ashley in a nutshell, this. Totally devoid of any shame or empathy, and cares not one jot about human health and well-being. A skid mark on the underpants of society.
— Tom Smith (@CTA_Smith88) March 23, 2020