According to the Chronicle, the Bin Zayed Group are NOT the only party interested in completing a takeover at Newcastle United this summer.
They also state that the Mexican-based ‘Orlegi group’ made contact to declare their interest earlier in the year year and that one ‘well-placed source’ said that another group – who ‘already own a club in Europe’ -have been in touch with Ashley’s lawyers.
I know exactly what you’re thinking – ‘It’s Groundhog Day!’. Interest is one thing, but I’ve never known a club receive so much ‘interest’ without being sold.
Nevertheless, here’s what’s been said in the Chronicle’s latest takeover piece this afternoon:
‘As things stand, the Sheikh Khaled-fronted group have signed a heads-of-terms agreement with Ashley and agreed upon a £350m price but the exclusivity stage is yet to be entered, and no detailed contract for a sale has been drawn up.
‘The Dubai-based Bin Zayed Group are among those interested, but critically it is understood that they are not the only party who have advanced further than merely casting envious glances in Newcastle’s direction, as we reported last week .
‘Kenyon’s interest has never waned entirely – and, while the former Chelsea CEO has struggled to bring enough investors on board to raise the capital necessary to buy United, he has continued to court an executive position at St James’ Park.
‘Amanda Staveley and PCP Capital Partners may have been dismissed as “time-wasters” by a source close to Ashley 18 months ago, but the financier is definitely still interested in buying Newcastle United.
‘She said as much to The National four months ago, confirming Newcastle were still of “interest” to PCP , primarily because of their “fantastic” fanbase. Any return to the negotiating table by Staveley was always going to be postponed until the Magpies were safe but her group remain active behind-the-scenes.
‘ChronicleLive understands that another group who already own at least one European football club have also held discussions with Ashley’s lawyers, while Mexican sports company the Orlegi Group made contact earlier this year, too.’
One of two things need to happen now.
It’s either time for one of these interested parties – ideally the BZG – to put their money where their mouth is, make a bid and get this deal done, or it’s time for Mike Ashley to reduce his demands (if that’s the issue) and sell up.
The club is entering a major crossroads. We either build on everything Rafa Benitez has done for us over the past three years, tie him down to a new deal and start showing some direction and ambition as a club, or Ashley fails to sell up, he loses the best manager we’ve had since Sir Bobby and we see things on Tyneside descend into turmoil once again.
This shouldn’t be difficult, but things are Newcastle United are never straight forward.