Newcastle chairman Chris Mort insists the club will not 'do a Leeds' in a bid to break into the Premier League's top four.
Magpies boss Kevin Keegan this week claimed the club had 'no chance' of finishing any higher than fifth during the remaining three years of his contract.
Newcastle are bankrolled by billionaire businessman Mike Ashley but Mort revealed the fear of repeating the win-or-bust policy that saw Leeds mired in debt would prevent the club spending beyond its means.
Mort said in The Sun: 'We don't want to do a Leeds. It doesn't make sense.
'This club had £100million-worth of debt which has now been cleared and it would be foolish to stretch it beyond its limits.
'I thought Kevin's comments were quite sensible.
'I'm not sure what people's expectations are but I don't think most Newcastle fans would be greatly surprised by what he had to say.
'There are those who are naturally optimistic but it does no harm to come out with some realism and say that if we get fifth, we will have done well. He's right.'
Mort insisted Keegan would have money to spend, adding: 'We have started talking about who we will be bringing in and Kevin will have the final say.'