Newcastle Takeover Bid Complete
Updated: Oct 15, 2021
Saudi Sovereign Investment Fund Completes Takeover
The footballing and financial landscape of the Premier League has been rocked by the news of Newcastle United’s takeover by the Saudi State Fund being completed.
The £300M deal was a protracted one and the new owners had to prove that the Saudi Arabian government wouldn’t be running the club. After 18 months of negotiating, the deal was finally rubber-stamped by the Premier League. Whether or not the Saudi government truly won’t be running the club is another topic for another article.
The Premier League had this to say in their official statement:
“Following the completion of the Premier League's Owners' and Directors' Test, the club has been sold to the consortium with immediate effect. The legal disputes concerned which entities would own and/or have the ability to control the club following the takeover. All parties have agreed the settlement is necessary to end the long uncertainty for fans over the club’s ownership. The Premier League has now received legally binding assurances that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not control Newcastle United Football Club. All parties are pleased to have concluded this process which gives certainty and clarity to Newcastle United Football Club and their fans.”
The official statement from the new owners said:
“We are extremely proud to become the new owners of Newcastle United, one of the most famous clubs in English football. We thank the Newcastle fans for their tremendously loyal support over the years and we are excited to work together with them.”
The long-suffering Geordie fans are delighted to see the back of former owner Mike Ashley whose only two trophies in his fourteen-year reign as owner consisted of just top Championship trophies. For context that’s the second-tier league in the English footballing pyramid.
They are also delighted that their new owners have a wealth that supersedes any current owner in the Premier League. The Saudi sovereign wealth fund dwarfs Manchester City’s current owner’s wealth substantially.
Newcastle fans are of the belief that this takeover will finally deliver success to the club much in the same way Sheikh Mansour has delivered success to Manchester City. The club has not been English champions since 1927. I expect this to change in the next decade or so.
The Magpies are sleeping giants in every sense of the term. They have arguably the largest local following in the UK. That is not to diminish their reach internationally, as they have millions of fans across the globe also.
Currently, the club sits in the relegation zone, languishing without a victory in 7 matches. Speculation is rife that the unpopular current management team will be replaced sooner rather than later and significant investment in the club via the transfer market will begin in January as the new owners look to ensure the club is not relegated.
Club legend Alan Shearer was clearly excited by the news and had this to say:
”The fans are loyal, they love their football club and their life is Newcastle United. It all depends on whether Newcastle wins on a Saturday. They work hard all week to spend their money on the club, so I understand why there is so much happiness in the city today and I feel exactly the same. Our fans also need to know that they matter, because they haven't for 14 years, so today is special for them."
The football world will be watching closely to see what the next step is for the new owners of Newcastle. One thing is for sure the current landscape of the Premier League and European football as a whole will never be the same again!
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