Fans continue to wait on news of progress on the Amanda Staveley takeover of Newcastle United.
Or indeed progress of any other potential buyer…
It is a little bizarre that a couple of months after claims of four or five other interested parties looking to buy the club, not a single journalist has managed to identify a single one of these other claimed potential buyers.
However, Sunday morning HAS brought claims of Amanda Staveley progress, of sorts.
The Chronicle claim knowledge of Staveley’s company this week requesting copies of club accounts going back 27 years.
This takes us back to the days of Gordon McKeag and trying to fight off John Hall, then the accounts would progress through his eventual takeover, eventually the flotation of the club in the late 90s, before then Hall and Shepherd delivered us into the hands of Mike Ashley.
Quite a tale to look through for Amanda Staveley and friends.
The Chronicle – 19 November 2017:
‘Newcastle United’s potential buyers PCP Partners are carrying out an assiduous look into the Magpies’ financial history before submitting their formal offer to take the club off Mike Ashley’s hands.
But there have still be some signs of progress this week as fans await one of the biggest stories in decades at St James’ Park.
After national reports last weekend that Amanda Staveley was close to completing the deal, the reality is that the due diligence period is yet to be completed.
Although, Staveley and PCP Partners are the frontrunners to buy the club with interest from other groups starting to fade away.
It is understood that PCP Partners are currently carrying out a thorough review of the club’s history books and finances including past transfer dealings and sponsorship agreements.
Indeed, it is believed that PCP requested copies of accounts that date back 27 years and the group are looking through those finances after requesting information last week before it was despatched to the capital for further review.
United officials, though, have yet to receive the a formal offer with a final price for the club yet to be negotiated.
PCP value the club at £300million but it is expected that Mike Ashley will hold out for more which has led to some suggestions that it could take until the summer for the sale to go through.
United originally stated to the media, via their solicitors, that they wanted a sale concluded by the festive period.’
With previous claims that due diligence started more than a month ago, it would be strange if the relevant club accounts from previous years are only now being looked at.
If the Chronicle report is on the money, then it certainly doesn’t suggest that anything of substance will happen soon.
Fair to say that all Newcastle supporters are currently existing on a point somewhere between believing a takeover is certain and we will all live happily ever after at one extreme, then at the other end, there are fans who think the whole thing is just another case of Mike Ashley playing us all for fools and sometime next year we will be told that he did his best to sell but…and we are stuck with him until further notice.
A bit like religion I’m not sure what to believe about a Newcastle United takeover because pretty much it all comes down to belief.
I have no belief whatsoever in what Mike Ashley or his minions tell us because we have been lied to so many times in the past.
With no confirmation from Amanda Staveley/PCP Partners or anybody else, that they are in talks to buy Newcastle United, then it comes down to what you read in the media and whether you believe it. Knowing full well that they have to report something to get you reading, whether anything is actually happening or not.
And yes, I know there are claims that NDAs (non-disclosure agreements) have been signed BUT that wouldn’t necessarily stop any potential buyer confirming that they are indeed in negotiations. It simply prevents them discussing confidential information that they are given access to, in order to decide what the club is worth and/or whether to make an offer.
I am not saying it isn’t possible Amanda Staveley or whoever hasn’t signed an NDA and isn’t interested in making their possibility of buying the club public, more the fact that whatever is or isn’t happening, the supporters/public don’t know anything for sure.
Whatever the case, one thing for sure is that the club is simply adrift without a paddle at the minute, with Rafa Benitez valiantly trying to keep it afloat until the rescue happens.
Despite being one of the richest owners in the Premier League and with funds often sitting in the club’s accounts, Mike Ashley has consistently allowed Newcastle to court disaster season after season with a lack of investment in the squad and a distorted/disastrous transfer policy with Graham Carr, leading to two relegations and close shaves on a number of other occasions.
If he remains in control and there is no sale, then to me it would only mean a certainty of more gambles with future disaster to come, no matter how long Rafa Benitez was willing to stick it out under him.
Two instant promotions have only come about through very favourable circumstances, in the shape of managers of the calibre of Chris Hughton and Rafa Benitez, as well as transfer funds and/or decent standard players staying on after relegation.
No reason to suggest why the next time we won’t hit an iceberg the size of the one the mackems have hit as they stand 24th and bottom of the Championship, whilst Hull who were also relegated are currently 20th.
None of are expecting a minute by minute reporting of a takeover happening, we just want to see the end result and something at last that is tangible to believe in going forward.
I can stand being left in the dark for the time being, if eventually we then leave these dark ages of life under Mike Ashley.