Free Sports Direct coat if Newcastle beat West Ham

Sarah Coles
Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Sunderland v Newcastle United - Stadium of Light
Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Sunderland v Newcastle United - Stadium of Light

Sports Direct is offering football fans a £59.999 winter jacket completely free - as long as Newcastle beats West Ham this weekend. The deal, offered by boss Mike Ashley (who also happens to be the owner of Newcastle United), is aimed at persuading more people to get behind the Magpies.

The deal, for the padded Everlast jackets, was actually originally offered if Newcastle beat Manchester United on Tuesday, but they settled for a 3-3 draw instead, so the deal rolls over.

You don't have to be a Newcastle fan. In the event of a win, you can just register for the offer on the Sports Direct Facebook page and you'll get a voucher for a free jacket - as long as you're happy to pay for delivery. Ashley has set aside £2.4 million worth of free jackets, so you have a reasonable chance of being quick enough to snap one up.
Of course, with the form Newcastle had been in this year, there's no telling how many times the deal will roll forward. Given they have secured just 18 points from 21 matches - and are second from bottom in the table - there's no guarantee of a win in the immediate future.

Fans unimpressed

Even though it's a freebie - which the store says is worth £59.99 - the reaction hasn't been particularly positive. Some fans are reading it as a lack of faith that Newcastle will ever win. One Twitter one user wrote: "You can see how much hope the owner has in us winning".

Others feel Ashley is using his position to promote Sports Direct. One wrote: "Once again proving the club is vehicle for selling".

Some even feel that Sports Direct isn't the kind of brand the club should be associated with. One Tweeted: "Wow - how crass and embarrassing! This is on a par with Wonga plastered over shirts & SD signage on every square inch of SJP!" While another added: "Can you imagine they stick you would get for wearing one...people will be ran out of town!" and one said: "I'd rather go naked."

Another fan made a suggestion that: "If NUFC lose, the management, back room staff and subs should be made to wear them on the bench for the next game!"

While another pointed out that the jacket is actually currently marked down to £6 on Amazon.

Others, meanwhile, say they have liked the Facebook page in order to register for a free jacket - which they will then donate to a homeless charity.

But what do you think? Is any freebie worth celebrating, or are there some you'd happily go without? Let us known the comments.

Newcastle United Club Fact File
Newcastle United Club Fact File