The Newcastle Takeover burst into life on Tuesday night, though not in the way any of us were hoping.

Mike Ashley using Sky Sports, as usual (see below), to claim there was actually no deal on offer from the Amanda Staveley led bid and indeed, nothing was even under discussion/negotiation.

The ‘highlight’ of the Sky Sports exclusive being Mike Ashley (through a source…) claiming the attempts to reach a deal with Staveley had been a ‘complete waste of time’.

Back came Amanda Staveley (also see below) with George Caulkin of The Times saying that the Staveley camp insisted a written bid for Newcastle was made in November, with the clear implication being that this deal (widely reported as £250m) was still on the table.

Obviously nobody can take Tuesday night’s events as any kind of a positive BUT when you scrape away the posturing then has anything really changed?

Mike Ashley is making clear that, as we all already knew, that the £250m offer from Amanda Staveley is not acceptable, whilst the Ms Staveley bidders have reasserted their own position, that their £250m bid is still active but they aren’t increasing it, at least not at the moment.

Apart from Mike Ashley, as he has done so often in the past, throwing his toys out of the pram in a typical show of petulance, what is different now?

In a way I actually take last night’s events as a positive, Mike Ashley lashing out has finally proved to me once and for all that he definitely wants to sell the club.

If he was easy either way then why would he be taking such a strop?

The opposing positions have been established for some time, Mike Ashley wants top dollar, as though it is May and Newcastle know they are getting ready to prepare for an upcoming season in the Premier League, whilst the Amanda Staveley bidders are only willing to pay a lower price, at least for the time being, based on the fact that in four months time this could be a club in the Championship.

For all Ashley’s histrionics, that is still the position for me. He isn’t used to people not doing what he wants, when he wants them to do it.

Tuesday night hasn’t changed anything in terms of the chances of the club being sold, it merely confirmed what the current position was/is.

Once everybody knows  which division Newcastle United will be in next season, serious talks and almost certainly an increased offer from Amanda Staveley, and potentially others, can/will happen. Whether that offer(s) prove acceptable to Mike Ashley we will only find out when we reach that situation.

The Mag – Tuesday 16 January 2018:

The Amanda Staveley camp have hit back after Mike Ashley’s PR machine used their usual medium, Sky Sports, to deliver a damning attack on the group bidding to buy Newcastle United.

The Tuesday night Sky Sports offensive (see below) saw a Mike Ashley source (Mike Ashley) say that there was no deal on offer and that nothing is even under discussion.

It went on to claim that the whole Amanda Staveley episode had been a ‘waste of time’ despite the valiant attempts of Mike Ashley to do a deal…

Now though, the very reliable George Caulkin of The Times has given the reply from the Amanda Staveley side, with two sources saying that ‘categorically’ there had been a written offer made in November and that the offer had been made via Chris Mort, who ran the club for Mike Ashley when he first bought it.

George Caulkin of The Times:

“Two sources close to Amanda Staveley assert categorically that PCP submitted a written bid for NUFC in mid November.

“Submitted to Ashley’s solicitors through Chris Mort of Freshfields (who of course used to work for Ashley & the club), they insist.

“For their part, Newcastle sources insist that the statement released to Sky – that talks with Staveley have been “a complete waste of time” – are reflective of Mike Ashley’s views.”

The Mag – 16 January 2017:

Tuesday night exclusive from Sky Sports has revealed there is no deal on the table from Amanda Staveley ‘or even under discussion’ with Mike Ashley.

Sky Sports say that ‘a source close to Mike Ashley’ has told them this.

Which when it is Sky Sports, then we can safely assume that this comes direct from Mike Ashley with them being as thick as thieves.

The Sky Sports story says that the source/Mike Ashley says that they are releasing this information because ‘It is only right to let the fans know…’.

Yes, we all know that the cares and concerns of the Newcastle fans are always close to Ashley’s heart, not.

The PR machine rumbles on, saying that Mike Ashley’s valiant attempts to reach a deal with the Amanda Staveley group had been ‘exhausting, frustrating and a complete waste of time.

Which coincidentally is how the vast majority of Newcastle fans would describe these 11 seasons under Ashley’s ownership.

Earlier today there was a piece put out by Press Association Sport, who had clearly been briefed by somebody.

Things now falling into place as their source was revealing that Mike Ashley had now agreed to back Rafa Benitez in making three January signings

So it doesn’t take a genius to work out that this was Ashley’s PR people as well, trying to put out a positive message that the owner was (allegedly) prepared to back transfers, before then putting out this barbed attack on Amanda Staveley and her backers. However, that ‘positive’ transfer story was only positive in a very limited way, as when you got past the headline it went on to say that Rafa would be able to bring in three signings but only with a very ‘limited’ budget.

So in other words, the manager has to bring in quality signings on a pittance. Never going to happen.

Of course we all believe what we want to, just as when after Ashley’s announcement the club was up for sale in October, his legal representative in his second appearance on Sky Sports came out and claimed that several other serious bidders had come forward, only to be never mentioned again…

Sky Sports:

‘No deal is in place between Newcastle owner Mike Ashley and Amanda Staveley’s PCP group for the sale of the club, Sky Sports News understands.

A source close to Ashley said:

“It is only right to let the fans know that there is no deal on the table or even under discussion with Amanda Staveley and PCP.”

The source added that attempts to reach a deal had proved to be “exhausting, frustrating and a complete waste of time”.

Sky Sports News have contacted PCP and are awaiting comment.’

  • Marco

    Stop on article!

  • Paul Patterson

    Trouble is, I can see Ashley turning round in May (if we aren’t relegated) and saying it’s a Premier League club, with the tv riches that are on offer, ‘Get me £450m!’ Which I can’t see anyone paying. I can’t see him selling if the next tv contract is going to be worth silly money. Note- The mackems got £90m+ for getting relegated last season.
    With that kind of money we’ll be stuck with him for quite some time yet . .

    • Vladimir Biggski

      If we go down he gets to keep this years £100m extra income. If we stay up he pockets this years money and also pockets the tv cash from next season. He could afford to back Rafa by £50 to £100m comfortably but he doesn’t need to.

      He is taking a gamble on Rafa staying and keeping us up. The premier league even provide him with insurance for free in the form of the balloon payment.

      He continues to play us all and gets away with it.

  • Mitros gotta start

    Ashley a petulant child throwing his toys out the pram?
    Sounds nothing like him!

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      I doubt he had any toys, even as a Child

      • Dillon Tovak

        He had a squash racket that he was most likely beaten with, hence his anger.

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    There is no deal on the table because he binned it.
    He is what he is, pay the price or forget it

  • East Durham Mag

    Exhausting and frustrating was that on your jollies over Xmas Mike? A lot of people said it was a load of sh*te when you publicly announced NUFC was up for sale, i must admit i was taken in but now see you for the horrible, greedy, lying charlatan that you undoubtedly are. Sad times.

  • Vladimir Biggski

    Just not surprised at all. Mike Ashley is stringing everyone along as he always does. And all the while, where is all the money going?

    • CaptainCaveman

      Same. I’m not even disappointed as I didn’t expect anything to happen anyway.

  • ghostrider

    Nothing worse than tyre kickers.

    • FatParosite

      You’ve either bought the Ashley PR issue or you’re posting here on behalf of some agency doing social media tasks for Bishop.

      • Cockneytrev


      • ghostrider

        I’m posting here as me and for me, with my own opinions which you are free to agree or disagree with.

        • TheFatController

          It’s never good when selling anything to only have one tyre kicker turn up though.

          Suggests everyone else sees it as overpriced and not even worth kicking the tyres of.

          • ghostrider

            You and everyone else knows it is not over priced.
            If anything it’s under valued.
            If Ashley let this club go for peanuts then he’s the devil himself.
            He won’t let it go for peanuts because he actually cares about the club.

            He won’t have some chancers try to beg it on the back of the fans hate for him and then allow them to go and ruin it, which would happen.

            Then what?

            A few years down the line with chancers and fans saying ” well I’m not bothered about playing Hartlepool, I’m just glad we got rid of Ashley.”

          • Dillon Tovak

            Such a trolls comment. You might as well just post, HATE ME!! BITE THE BAIT!!

          • ghostrider

            If you think 350 million is over priced for this club then you carry on.
            In this day and age of silly money this club is cheap at that price.

            Neymar nearly 200 million.
            Think about it.

          • TheFatController

            Yes, if the club had neymar it would be worth about £450m. But as it doesn’t….take £200m off and you have a realistic valuation.

            Well done.

          • ghostrider

            Nice twist but no cigar.

          • HarryHype59

            It could be worth £100m in June if we get relegated again!

          • ghostrider

            It could go out of existence if we get took over by clowns.
            It could fall into a sink hole.
            It could be worth a billion if a Sheikh Mansour type came in and went hell for leather.

            It could be anything in the right or wrong hands.
            What it’s worth in june may be not what it’s worth right now.
            It could be the same or less or more.

            we can all speculate and you’re entitled to your speculation.

          • Kneebotherm8

            So you’re saying…..better the clown you know than the clown you don’t?

          • ghostrider

            In a way, yes.

          • HarryHype59

            Relegation is probably 50:50. The options you give are about as likely as Ashley spending realistic sums on transfers!

          • ghostrider

            Relegation is 50/50 for ourselves and 9 other teams as it stands right now.
            I’d rather not bring in any players than bring in panic buys or unneeded players like Rafa seems to be targeting.

            I dearly hope Rafa walks or Ashley sacks him rather than give him money.
            Koeman in right now and we are as good as safe.

          • HarryHype59

            WHU and CP have better players than us and are showing a bit of form! For me its the three promoted sides, then Swansea, Stoke and WBA!

            The lack of ambition re transfers, in addition to very poor home form , makes NUFC one of the favourites for the drop.

          • ghostrider

            WHU and CP do have better players in some respects but then again their wage bill is unsustainable .
            You see, this is the problem with those clubs chasing the hare. They are not destined to ever catch it but we keep shelling out more and more money to keep chasing.

            The end result is money in the coffers = zero and the wage bill reading club minus in terms of income in, to out.

            Fire sales to quicksand sinking is next.
            Newcastle United?…..We are skin flints in many respects but it’s that which is keeping us in a strong position to have a go at times with always a contingency plan.
            Not the best looking scenario for the fan but a more solid and reliable scenario for survival at the top end of the football chain.

            As for favourites for the drop. I agree if Rafa stays….unless he buys in a striker or two and actually starts playing to his players strengths.

          • HarryHype59

            It’s highly likely both of those clubs are going to survive in the EPL this season! By doing so they will guarantee the £110m EPL TV deal for next season!

            Newcastle are 50:50 to go down! If that happens the better players will be sold as this club cannot cover its wage bill without the TV money!

            Two relegations in two years would cause fiscal meltdown at this club!

          • ghostrider

            They might survive but the issue is they are writing cheques their bodies can’t cash. (I got that off top gun)
            And the thing is it’ll come back to bite them all and they’ll end up with a team full of mercenaries on the injury table just seeing out their contracts.

            Carroll is a master at it and little pea and co are playing it.
            The rest will follow.
            Same as Palace and a whole host of other clubs.

            Those clubs have those type of players because they’re London clubs but the players are only after being part of London and not the team.
            Many will be waiting for the step up or merely just sitting on a long contract on sickening wages.

            No way in hell that Palace and West Ham can afford the wages they’re paying their players, regardless of TV deals.

          • HarryHype59

            WHU are pulling in big crowds, Palace unlike us are debt free!

          • ghostrider

            No they aren’t.

          • TheFatController

            They’re not proven as chancers, just as not willing to pay £300m for a club 3 points above relegation and with nothing to suggest they’ll be pulling away as they’re in a false position.

            You want to believe they’re not as good as Ashley, but have no evidence to prove that.

            Stop talking unsubstantiated nonsense therefore. Give one fact that proves they’re worse than Ashley, a man who has told us has no money…?

          • ghostrider

            Look at all the clubs that were attractive to investors. Many aren’t even in the premier league for crying out loud, so what’s the excuse for them?

            People aren’t willing to pay the money because they’re not serious about doing anything big for the club. Just the same also ran stance whilst they make a killing on wheeling and dealing.

          • hetonmag

            Boy o Boy you’ve trawled the gutter there mind saying he cares for the club this after putting Kinnear in charge of team affair’s, give owa man.

          • ghostrider

            He’s got one life on Earth like we all have and 11 years of it has been spent owning this club.
            That’s not a man who doesn’t care.
            If we were in league 1 or 2 then I’d say you are correct.
            We are in the premier league after blips and all kinds of shenanigans that most clubs go through apart from those usual suspects owned by blank cheque, get around fair play, owners.

            All we can do is keep plugging away in a way that doesn’t leave us in and dire situation should we overachieve and become a bargaining bin for inflated transfers and wages.

            In house management with a contingency plan for having a go. That’s the best we can hope for.
            Everything has to click into place for it to happen.

          • HarryHype59

            If we were an established EPL side, like we were pre Ashley, I would be in agreement with you! However, NUFC are now relegation fodder with a 50:50 chance of going down again! As such we are a high risk investment!

          • ghostrider

            The bottom 10 teams are all relegation fodder.
            Most are established premier league teams.
            In normal circumstances we would have a much better chance than most of those teams if we had a manager that knew what he was doing.
            We don’t.
            We have a manager that’s running on past reputation and relying on the hatred of an owner to make excuses after excuses.

            99% of other managers would be crucified at this point.

          • Coble’s Return

            All of the posters arguing that PCP should just stump up an extra £50million are high. Ashley has had one bid – one bid! The club is worth what the market will pay and Ashley has overpriced.

          • ghostrider

            Ashley is asking for what he thinks the club is worth. He’s refusing to budge.
            Kicking tyres and brushing against surface rust will not force him to sell.
            Because he doesn’t need to sell.

            If this was John Hall and co, they would have taken the money and ran, regardless of the motives of the newbies.

          • Coble’s Return

            Quite simply, the club is worth less than Ashley thinks. He doesn’t have to sell, on that we can agree. However, the experience of the past 10 years suggests that if he doesn’t, we will go down again at some time in the future and without any guarantee of coming back up. Ashley values NUFC on its potential as an EPL club without factoring the cost of ensuring its EPL status.

          • ghostrider

            The club is worth what Ashley asks for.

          • HarryHype59

            No, its worth what some one is willing to pay!

            That’s the cast iron law of supply and demand!

          • ghostrider

            It’s worth what someone is willing to pay if the seller is desperate.
            Ashley isn’t desperate.

          • HarryHype59

            Too true! Investors know the club comes with at least £100m additional costs needed for squad improvement!

          • HarryHype59

            Good point….😀😁

  • S.G.M.

    Throwing toys from the pram, taking a strop, Where do you get that from? 300mil is not enough, simple as. if he spends now (lets hope) and secures premiership, 400Mill at least.

    • FatParosite

      Give over. NUFC are pulling in less than £1M profit less advertising and their operating costs have gone up from 70 to 90 Million since last season. Ashley is not investing in new players for NUFC because NUFC would have to borrow to fund them (hence sell to buy). £300 Million represents a good deal for Ashley it gets him out of his PR gaffes & rids him of his broken toy. The petulance shown last night is a business save face.

    • TheFatController

      PCP say they put in a written bid, it seems Ashley denies that.

      Which is Ashley saying rather than having one bid in ten years, I’ve actually had no bids in ten years.

      Not sure therefore, based on a complete lack of interest in buying the club from the world’s investors, how you get a value of “£400m at least”?

  • Leicester Mag

    See Chronic finally offering up half hearted challenge to Ashley too little too late. We could face a defining moment in the club’s history. If Rafa walks and Ashley stays will fans fight or accept once again? Will the Chronic properly champion any campaign or collect further splinters sitting on the fence. Get the barsteward out or it will be BOHICA time – Bend over here it comes again.

    • Steve

      They do it after every event. Although it only gets written in the paper or on the website, so no one at the club is ever questioned. Gets the supporters riled up and helps with their clicks. The Chron is a rag full of spineless “reporters” who have been told by their boss of the Mirror Group (Offical Media Partner of NUFC) that they are not allowed to annoy club officials. Until we get a real media outlet that’s willing to challenge the club, this will continue until Ashley’s last breath.

      • Antonoz

        Ashley’s last breath – now there’s an option I could live with.

  • Monkseaton Magpies

    What has changed and Ashley has cleared the air telling the fans there is no hope of a takeover as these people do not have the funds and are not serious about buying the club. What is hard to understand about that. We can now mover forward knowing that Ashley will be in charge at least till the Summer and hopefully avoid relegation without the hope of a takeover.

    • TheFatController

      That’s true, and now he’s put it up for sale he’s changed his position at the club forever.

      After 6 months of the hope of a change of ownership, he’s now got until summer to sell or it’ll be too much for most connected with the club to cope with a future that is Ashley’s ‘minimum investment/ can’t work with anyone who thinks big’ culture

      I fear he’ll have huge difficulty selling the club no matter what now, because he needs two bidders to get a good price and in 10 years he’s had one bid…

      • Monkseaton Magpies

        If we can survive this season the future is bright whoever owns the club as the money will be there to buy players. At the moment nearly all our income goes on operating costs which cannot go up greatly next year due to the fair play rules.

        • HarryHype59

          This years TV deal covers the operating costs!

          • Monkseaton Magpies

            Maybe but not the previous years this is where the kind Mr Ashley stepped in bailing the club out yet again but he gets no thanks on here.

          • HarryHype59

            Nice Mr Ashley ha ha…how’s life in Pennywell?

            The 2016 season we got relegated the club collected £72m TV money! That covered 95% of the wage bill! Your beloved owner has been subsidised to the tune of around half a billion in TV money since he took over!

            He bails the club out as we have developed a habit of getting relegated under his ownership! He really is a poor owner!

    • huntforbeer

      I think you’ll find that if the prospective purchasers are,as reported today,they have more than adequate funds-even more money than Ashley!

      • Monkseaton Magpies

        It seems not as they cannot afford the £300m all their money probably tied up in property also they would sack Rafa which would be a good start with the fans.

  • Kneebotherm8

    What does he mean,it’s been a total waste of time?…,………..he got a free curry didn’t he?…….