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Journalist double sources on Newcastle United takeover surely means Peter Kenyon interest at least checks out

2 years ago

The only thing Newcastle fans seem to agree on these days, is that we all want what’s best for the club, and we are desperate to see the back of Mike Ashley’s ownership.

Protests, methods of protest, the tactical approach of Rafa Benitez, and even the selection of Ayoze Perez, are just some of the issues where there isn’t much consensus.

Fractures in the fan base have characterised these 12 unhappy years of the Ashley era. It’s grim when you realise how long we have been saddled with this owner. It’s a divide and rule kingdom.

The growth of smartphone use and social media channels like Twitter and Facebook create the space for the debate and disagreement to flourish.

Back in the good old days it was either write a letter to the Mag, write to the Chronicle, or just talk about it all when you saw a handful of friends face to face. These days, at the touch of a few buttons, you can enter a whole cyber world of NUFC chatter.

Having explored social media, I can confirm that one big area of conflict is the claim that Newcastle United is about to be sold. There are the believers and the non-believers.

Many are determined that it’s a lie.

Some want to believe that there just maybe is something in it and we could be somewhere near the glorious moment when confirmation of a sale gets confirmed on the news pages of the club website.

I’m sure that I’m already getting shouted down in the comment sections below but I actually think there is something accurate in all of these takeover stories.

The problem is that Mike Ashley is one of the sources, via Sky News, and while I don’t think that it was an outright lie, he may have exaggerated the stages of progress in an attempt to smoke out a bid.

We have been told Peter Kenyon is leading a consortium that wants to wrest control from Ashley. We have to assume Kenyon himself is possibly the other source of the story, probably confirmed it to journalists via strictly off the record briefings, where he isn’t quoted.

It was said at one stage talks were advanced, and then a week later Kenyon was still allegedly short of the asking price by as much as £100m, this is where it all started to look farcical.

Since then, the silence has been pretty deafening. Apart from a spurious claim of former Man City Chief Executive Gary Cook heading up other interest.

Are there really four interested parties?

Newcastle fans are rightly sceptical because we know the regime running our club just cannot be trusted.

Many see this apparent bid as a ruse for MA to scurry away from investing and dodging the big issues facing the football club. Well, I come in peace, and I think you might just be right, but it’s hard to know what we can believe in.

All of the highly respected journalists covering NUFC for the nationals – Messrs Caulkin, Edwards and Hardy to name three – have checked the story out, and ran it based on more than a single source, so surely that means Kenyon’s interest at least checks out.

Would a bloke like Kenyon allow himself to take part in a fake news stunt to help Mike Ashley out? Surely not.

The bad news, and this is my opinion, and not fact, is that Ashley seems to want a strict set of terms met before he hands over the keys and bidders cannot seem to get past these final hurdles. The hard bit is doing the deal.

So we’re left in this information vacuum fighting among ourselves, while we await the next development. It will be depressingly predictable if we see a statement from Ashley close to the end of the January window, stating no bids have been acceptable to him.

Knowing what to believe is a huge issue.

It’s a bleak ending to 2018 for Newcastle fans – at least we can all agree on that.

You can follow the author on Twitter @DavePunton


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