Following last night’s ‘dinner date’ with Benitez, his staff and the NUFC squad in a restaurant in Northumberland, it has been revealed by North-East reporter Craig Hope that Ashley confirmed he will NOT be selling the club this season.
You can never second guess him and it’s always hard to know the truth, however this does not add up with what he’s been leaking out to the press over the past few months.
September 12th – It’s reported in The Chronicle that Mike Ashley has told those close to him that he would be willing to accept £300m for Newcastle United as he has become ‘fed up’ with football.
September 18th – Local reports and Sky Sports (a popular mouth piece of his) now claim that Ashley has reduced his valuation from £400m to around £300m (providing there’s no clauses) in a bid to sell the club.
September 29th – Peter Kenyon emerges as a takeover contender and is said to be ‘assembling’ a bid – with Ashley said to be ‘receptive’ to a potential sale if he can provide proof of funds.
October 4th – “Ashley said the club would NOT be sold this season and promised funds” – A snippet from Craig Hope’s piece for The Mail following last night’s meal – confirming that he’s now said the club will NOT be sold this season and money will be spent in January.
So, most of the above suggested that he is looking to sell the club, with him reducing asking price and being ‘receptive’ to Kenyon’s interest, however he’s now telling Benitez and players that the club won’t be sold this season.
It’s all a big PR ploy and we are constantly the victims of it.