The Independent’s Martin Hardy wrote a largely positive piece on Rafa Benitez recently, stating that the Spaniard will remain at the club next season, however it also contained one worrying claim – Mike Ashley looks very likely to remain as our owner this summer.
The piece from the trusted North-East correspondent made bold claims that Rafa has already committed to Newcastle for next season, containing quotes that suggested he’s here to stay for the long-term, but talk that Ashley is looking ‘increasingly likely’ to stay on is not what us NUFC fabs want to hear.
Here’s a snippet from his piece in the Independent over the weekend:
“Potential takeover talk has all but ended, with Mike Ashley ruling out any approach from Amanda Staveley in mid-January, following her failure to reach the club’s asking price.
“There is an increasing likelihood that he will remain as owner.”
This goes against what has been claimed by the likes of the Daily Mirror recently, who suggested that Staveley is ‘confident’ of sealing a takeover after ‘constructive talks’ in recent weeks.
That being said, we shouldn’t be surprised to read conflicting stories on the takeover front. Given the way it’s all went over the last 6 months, it seems that very few actually have any idea of what’s going on.
Martin Hardy may not either, but I back him to know more than most of these national papers sending out stories by people who have no reason to be ‘in the know’ in all of this.
Let’s hope he’s right on the Rafa front and wrong about Ashley’s potential stay at St James’ Park. I don’t quite see a world where the two can work together to make Newcastle great again.