Monday afternoon has seen Mike Ashley release a statement.
The club’s owner claiming that Newcastle United is now up for sale.
As well as Ashley’s statement, his lawyer then gave an interview to Sky Sports talking further about the claimed intention to sell (you can read both of these below).
A simple question for you then:
‘Is Mike Ashley serious about selling Newcastle United and willing to take realistic price?’
Vote now please.
Statement from St. James Holdings Limited (Mike Ashley):
‘As a result of increasing press speculation regarding the future of Newcastle United, the owner of the club, St. James Holdings Limited, wishes to clarify its intentions.
As one of the Premier League’s oldest and best supported football clubs – and for the benefit of its many fans and supporters in the UK and across the world – Newcastle United requires a clear direction and a path to a bright and successful future.
To give the club the best possible opportunity of securing the positioning and investment necessary to take it to the next level, at what is an important time in its history, its present ownership has determined that it is in the best interests of Newcastle United and its fans for the club to be put up for sale.
To give an incoming owner the maximum possible flexibility to make meaningful investment in the club, including in its playing squad, the sale process will give interested parties the opportunity of deferring substantial payments.
A process will now commence of identifying new ownership for the club that will be capable of delivering the sustained investment in and dedication to the club that is necessary for it to achieve its ambitions.’
Andrew Henderson (Mike Ashley’s lawyer) speaking to Sky Sports:
“There has obviously been a lot of press speculation about Mike’s intentions towards the club.
“I think that there is a view that over the years there has been a considerable investment, perhaps a feeling that all that can be done has been done.
“So it is probably just a recognition that it might be time for a change.
“Our intentions at the moment are to see if the club can be brought forward into new ownership by potentially Christmas.
“That would allow for a period for serious interested parties to put themselves forward, for a diligence process to carry on, and then hopefully by Christmas for a sale to conclude with the sort of flexibility around terms we have discussed.
“If that weren’t possible then there is no desire to sell the club for any price to anyone. There is a lot of responsibility that goes with owning the football club so we would then look at that at the relevant time.
“That’s the objective but nobody has a crystal ball so nobody can say for sure what happens and when.
“I think back to the question of price, it will depend on what somebody is prepared to pay for the club.
“Football clubs have a scarcity value, nobody is making 150-year-old football clubs with the kind of traditions that Newcastle United have so obviously there is value there but then in terms of what the number is that will be dictated by how many people, how many serious people are interested, how many serious people can deliver and so we then get to how long will that take, how long do we give them.
“I think that is a matter for negotiation but certainly not all in year one so that’s how we would be approaching it.”