Newcastle fans’ hope that the Saudi led takeover could return to the table have been boosted following claims that the Public Investment Fund ‘still wants to buy’ United.
The claim came from Arab News’ Frank Kane – the first time the Saudi based news outlet has referenced the takeover in the 17 weeks since the deal went to the Premier League.
It’s particularly intriguing as Arab News is seen by many as a newspaper highly in favour of the state and is owned by the Saudi Research and Publishing Company.
Kane wrote: “Closer analysis of the eight-month saga suggests that far from being all over, it is just entering a new phase.
“Ashley went on to insist that he remained “100 per cent committed” to the deal. It was also pretty apparent from conversations with PIF officials and with Amanda Staveley, the entrepreneur who put the consortium together, that it is still much in play.
“In reality, the consortium withdrawal statement changes little in the takeover equation. Ashley wants to sell. The consortium — which includes UK magnates the Reubens brothers, Staveley and the PIF — wants to buy. The PIF still wants to inject hundreds of millions of pounds into the club and the economy of England’s northeast.”
Staveley referenced in an interview the Athletic that all three parties would sign the deal instantly in the Premier League approved it – while Chronicle Live in this weekend’s notebook revealed that sources from the PiF refused to fully reject the notion of returning to the deal at some point.
Kane also goes onto write that
- The Premier League received a letter from the ‘highest economic authority in the Kingdom’ proving that the PiF was separate from the state – which he claims Masters ignored.
- Saudi Arabia offered to talk to the Premier League about TV rights and ‘in effect acting as the “underwriter” when the EPL comes to renegotiate the deal in 2022.’
- Finally, that despite reports link American businessman Henry Mauriss to the club ‘there is no other viable bidder waiting in the wings.’
The Premier League are still yet to comment on the record about the failed takeover but those at Newcastle are now kicking on with planning for the new season to ensure that Steve Bruce’s side is equipped to survive the drop.