The 2014-15 season could not have finished quicker for Newcastle United.
Following the departure of former boss Alan Pardew midway through the season, the Magpies only managed to win on three occasions under caretaker manager John Carver, in a run which very nearly saw them relegated to the Championship but for a last day victory against West Ham.
Coupled with the continuous protests against Mike Ashley's ownership and running of the club, many will have the north east giants down as favourites for relegation again next term.
Article continues below
However is the future beginning to look up for one of the Premier League's biggest underachievers in recent years.
Speaking to Sky Sports in his first media interview since taking over Newcastle in 2007 Ashley admitted to being responsible for his sides slump in form but remained firm that he will not sell the club until he has tasted success.
Article continues below
"I will continue the policy of investing in the football club. We've got the club on a very sound financial footing. So we are able to spend and punch above our weight.
"Now it's to win something and by the way, I won't be selling until I do. Not at any price. And when I say something if we ever get in a position where we get a Champions League place, that also qualifies as winning something.
"To be categorically clear. I'm not going anywhere until we win something."
Bold words from the English billionaire that would have pleased many a fan but left others wondering why it took so long for his ambitions to be made known.
They say actions speak louder than words though and the Toon army will be eager to see how big an investment if any is made over the summer. With the likes of captain Fabricio Coloccini and Jonas Gutierrez, who both suffered relegation with Newcastle in 2009 among those set to depart. As the club looks to freshen up the current playing squad and invest for the future.
In recent years Newcastle have become synonymous for their policy of selling on key players such as Yohan Cabaye and Newcastle born Andy Carroll, midway through the season for sizable profits. A tactic that although has helped to clear the club of it's outstanding debt has not sat well with the Newcastle faithful.
Whilst the current season has also seen a number of academy graduates such as Sammy Ameobi, Rolando Aarons and Adam Armstrong all become regular fixtures within the first team setup. Adding to an already youthful lineup alongside Jack Colback and Ayoze Perez to name a few. With Colback in particular coming in for praise. With his high intensity performances in midfield being a highlight in what was ultimately a forgettable season for the North east giants.
Coupled with the international experience of Moussa Sissoko, Tim Krul and Daryl Janmaat. The Magpies possess a squad that with some wise investment and shrewd signings has the potential to push on and challenge for a top ten finish within the coming season.
Having already added Karl Darlow and England U21 international Jamaal Lascelles to their ranks following the completion of their respective loan spells at Nottingham Forrest. A summer of change is well underway at St James' Park with more arrivals and departures expected to be announced within the coming months.
With one possible exit being that of head coach John Carver, who has still yet to be assured of his position following the climax of one of the most dismal seasons in the clubs history. In which it came to the brink of rejoining the Championship for the second time in six seasons.
Steve McClaren was the subject of several failed bids to join the Tyneside club as manager throughout the latter part of the season. However following his dismissal from Derby County has now become the front runner to succeed Carver should he be relieved of his position for the start of the 2015-16 season.
Although the die-hard Geordie still maintains that he is the best man to take the club forward; having been associated with Newcastle, since beginning his playing career there in 1983.
Though many appreciate the unrivaled enthusiasm and commitment to the cause Carver has for the club. It is thought to be unlikely that he will continue in his current role but instead remain at the club within some capacity.
Leaving owner Ashley with a dilemma as to who to entrust the club with. In a summer which will be pivotal to Newcastle's on field success for the coming season.