Newcastle United fans protest against Mike Ashley's ownership

Newcastle United said 47,500 fans bought tickets for the game. Credit: ITV News

A collection of 10 Newcastle United supporters groups have led a protest march from Newcastle city centre to St James' Park, ahead of the club's first Premier League game of the season against Arsenal.

The groups are protesting against what they describe as the club's owner, Mike Ashley's 'continued mismanagement of Newcastle United.'

The march began outside the Sports Direct store on Northumberland Street in the city centre and ended at St James' Park.

The supporters groups were also calling on fans to boycott the game 'making a loud, visible stand against Mike Ashley's ownership of the club'.

The collective group includes The Magpie Group, If Rafa Goes We Go, and Empty for Ashley.

Joe Halliday - a spokesperson for Empty for Ashley, one of the groups organising the protests said:

Newcastle United said more than 47,635 tickets were sold for the opening game, but inside St James' Park, the number of empty seats was clearly visible.

ITV News Tyne Tees spoke to fans ahead of the game, who had mixed feelings about the boycott.

The final score in Newcastle United's opening game was 1-nil to Arsenal.