Mike Ashley has appeared on TV on Monday night to say he is in talks to sell Newcastle United.

The NUFC owner claiming (see below) that a sale could be possible even before we get to 2019.

Not surprisingly this ‘news’ has generated a lot of coverage.

Most of the media, as usual, just presenting Mike Ashley’s words at face value, as opposed to putting it in the context of everything that has, and especially hasn’t, happened over the course of this last decade and more.

There is one question that nobody is really asking though, which is strange, including the bloke from Sky News who did the ‘interview’ tonight.

Clearly Mike Ashley has got his people to tell Sky News that he wanted to come on and of course they are not going to turn it down as it is guaranteed to attract attention – but why not ask him why he is doing it?

Not why is he (allegedly) selling Newcastle United…but rather, if it is genuine, why is he going on TV to say that a sale is in progress?

We can all think of many reasons why Mike Ashley would be doing this if he is just pretending to sell the club yet again…

Deterring fans from boycotting the Wolves match.

Discouraging the 20,000 with long-term season tickets from cancelling in January (if they don’t then they start paying for next (2019/20) year’s season ticket months before this current season ends).

Getting in early with excuse for not backing Rafa Benitez in January transfer window (too busy concentrating on getting the sale of the club sorted etc etc).

Messing further with the heads of Newcastle fans.

Just because he can.

On the other hand, I can’t think of any logical feasible reason why he would have gone on TV to say this, if there is any serious intention of trying to sell the club.

In the past he has come out with this kind of nonsense to try and placate protesting fans, such as when he forced Kevin Keegan out and then told the supporters that they could stop the protests and had listened to them, and was going to sell the club as quickly as possible. Over ten years later we are still waiting…

It surely in no way reassures Rafa Benitez, or indeed the players, of anything. He could just communicate this to Rafa Benitez privately with a phone call. In actual fact it was only six weeks or so ago when at the infamous pizza meal, that there was next to no chance of the club being sold this season.

I have seen one journalist claim that this could be an Ashley ploy to hurry along the (supposed) prospective buyer…but to me that sounds beyond lame.

It is on the same level as one of my mates telling me the other day that his wife and daughter had been to look at dresses for her ‘Prom’ next summer. There was one dress she liked but with it being £4oo+ they wanted to go away and think/talk about it, the saleswoman warning them that if they did that, the dress might not still be there tomorrow. That will be right, getting somebody to panic buy a £400+ dress some seven months before the event.

So Mike Ashley thinking he can panic buy some punter who is taking his time on a £300m, or whatever the supposed price is, for the club.

Surely it was the most obvious question the Sky bloke should have asked Ashley, as in why are you going public with this news?

No mention at all, or question, either of the fact that Newcastle are slap bang in the middle of another relegation battle. Something that allegedly made a sale in the middle of last season all but impossible. Why is that not a factor/insurmountable hurdle this time?

Back in 2007 we suddenly heard the news that Mike Ashley had agreed to buy John Hall’s shares, which in reality meant the whole club.

Like many of you, nothing I have seen or heard since that point eleven and a half years ago, convinces me that any sale by Mike Ashley will not happen the same way.

If/when he does go it will just be announced, not some long drawn out affair of negotiating and publicly talking about it.

I hope I am wrong about it this time but hope left the building long ago.

The Mag – Earlier tonight (Monday 3 December 2018:

Mike Ashley has announced on Monday night that Newcastle United could be sold before the end of this month.

The NUFC owner stating that talks with the potential buyer are way beyond any previous talks with anybody wanting to buy the club and that it is ‘possible’ a deal could be done and dusted in December – but ‘realistic’ for it to happen this month might be ‘too strong a word’ to use.

Yet again you can’t help but have a small part of you wonder if it could happen at last BUT having over a decade now of the club supposedly being up for sale and a series of supposed near misses, most of us will believe it when we see it.

Predictably, it was Sky where Mike Ashley turned up. With cynics (all of us!) no doubt wondering if his sudden chat about supposedly selling the club, is in any way some part of a PR circus connected to his appearance before a house of commons select committee to talk about ‘saving the high street’ earlier today and/or yet another episode in toying with the hopes of Newcastle fans.

Mike Ashley talking to Sky News:

“I am hopeful for the Newcastle fans, for the club, for everybody, that I will be able to step aside and we will be able to get an owner in that can please everybody.”

‘When will that be?’

“When would I like it to be?

“I would like it to be before the January transfer window.”

‘Is that realistic?’

“Hmmm. Realistic? It’s possible, realistic is maybe too strong a word.

“Hopefully we can carry on the good form…just recent good form…and we can get the deal done.”

‘So you are in exclusive talks with someone right now?’

“Not an exclusive but…

“Talks are at a more progressed stage than they have ever been.”

‘And whoever buys the club would presumably have to put in transfer funds for Rafa Benitez?’

“Yes, I’m very keen to sell it to the right buyer, so everybody is happy, that would be good news.”

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  • Shields Mag

    Load of codswallop from the fat man, he’s a proven liar ask Keegan, keep the pressure on Ashley Out!

  • Peaky

    Classic deflection & detraction from Chubby Checker & his fat boys….load of bollox….won’t happen.

    • Rich Lawson

      ”Lets Twist Again” ?

  • Down Under Mag

    He doesn’t want to sell. It’s either a badly designed P.R. campaign or just more of the usual ready made excuse as to why Rafa will get ZERO money to spend in January.

    • Leazes.

      He’s contradicted what he said just a few weeks ago about NOT selling this season…. its a Lie to undermine protest, Boycott and Benitez.

    • BigHairyDog

      It’s a disastrous PR stunt if he has no intention of selling, I can’t believe Keith Bishop planned that. He could’ve easily said “I have made it clear the club is for sale but nobody is willing to buy a club in the North East of England for the going rate Premier League clubs are worth”. Gets him off the hook with the interviewer, if he thinks people are going to be fooled and raise their hopes he’s bloody kidding himself. Nobody will believe it until a buyer is named and the deal is beginning to go through.

  • Albert Stubbins

    Bull..

  • Paul Patterson

    #courtprovenliar

  • Mrkgw

    Ashley has been a shocker of an owner of our club. But, listening to him at the select comittee about the high street vs internet shopping, he was actually very right. Problem for him at Newcastle is that he has been misadvised from the word go and has tried to short change his Managers and the supporters at every turn. Not good enough and he has to go as his methods evidently won’t change.

    • BigHairyDog

      Really??? He killed the high street sports shops, he allowed House of Fraser to “die” before scrounging the carcass and repackaging a cheaper version as HoF. He buys Evans Cycles and then makes hundreds unemployed. He places his own profits above anyone in his employment, ZERO hour contracts and modern day slavery are now synonymous with Sports Direct and it’s Shirebrook headquarters.

      • Mrkgw

        Not saying that. I’m inferring to the fact that rents are driving sales towards internet shopping meaning that the high street is dying. For example, I can buy items at discount online and yet, pay full whack at high street stores who cant afford to discount because of exorbitant rates from greedy landlords. He is right on that score 100%. But, he has ruined HOF – as I know having made the mistake of shopping there since the takeover. And I never shop at Sports Direct.

        • Toonrobbybobson

          Landlords dont set the rates. The central government do. Business rates are killing businesses. Its a sledge hammer to crack a nut. At a time the high street should be incentivised the numpties chasing around after a fudged ref brexit deal and killing many businesses and I include a huge number of small independents by hammering them with a tax that simply offers them nothing in return with no say.

          Its got nothing to do with landlords thats independent. The supply and demand dictates the rent price.

          For ashley may be a clever business man it does not mean his practices are good ones. Hes a selfish man with no sentiment or morals. Hes not and never was the correct custodians of NUFC. His character never would fit with the people of the North. Sir John Hall has alot to answer for letting this cuckoo in. Mike Ashley was clever enough to manipulate a situation where he would not paying advertising for global visibility. Whoever buys NUFC will essentially be paying SD advertising bill of last decade. He will laugh to the bank. But deep down I dont see why he would sell the cash cow unless he sees greater returns with his retail getting money back in as capital.

          • Mrkgw

            Well said and I too have previously stated the fact that John Hall has a lot to answer for in selling to Ashley. Cuckoo is an excellent description and very apt. But you are absolutely correct in that Ashley appears to be a very selfish individual and I agree that in terms of custodian of the club, he is quite appalling, having ridden across our loyal support for over a decade. Would the FA have tolerated the fact had he done so to Man Utd? I doubt that. This latest talk of a sale may well be another smokescreen but we can only live in hope. In any event, it near enough scuppers the January window – again.

  • TheFatController

    I suspect he may have a buyer.

    But one buyer spells ‘no competition to drive up price’ so this is Ashley’s last throw of the dice as he stares at £300m on the table in used £50 notes (wanting to cash them in before the £ goes below the $!)

    • BigHairyDog

      That could be an explanation, encourage another bidder or two to throw their hat into the ring.

  • BigHairyDog

    Apparently according to a caller tonight on BBC Newcastle’s Total Sport program the protests an shop shouting (his words) are not going to do anything. He is of course a Sunderland supporter or so he claims, he’s spent the last 2 years moaning and calling Sunderland fans for protesting against Ellis Short.
    Well to him and anyone else that doubts that this is having any effect on Ashley, think again. May be it’s not having the exact effect we desire but it’s making him come out from behind his cronies, it’s not Dennis Wise saying this, nor is it a carefully worded statement from KBA. He’s gone on live tv and claimed the club is all but sold and it’s only a matter of time if everything proceeds as he claims it has so far. If this doesn’t happen now and we’re in this same position next season there will be nothing KBA can do to put a positive spin on this interview.

  • Nufc 11

    Why owe why would he go on sky news to let everyone know this? It stinks to high heavens especially after the whole staveley fiasco.

  • Danimal

    More lies. Scum.

  • Jonas

    With this fake news, he could stave off a good portion of the Wolves protest and have ridden out the general wave of protests.
    Usual weasily cop-out laden words – why is being hopeful of a sale soon any different to every other day of the last 11years?
    I hope he sells the club by midnight – but a little bit more than hope is needed on both those counts.

    • FatParosite

      ‘Very keen to sell it to the right buyer… so everybody is happy… ‘ It’s extremely hard to pick a word out of this that isn’t a lie.

      • nufcslf

        Hear, hear

    • Carverlier football

      Maybe. But I’d hope if it were the case then action against him would be like the tide… This wave may recede but the next one will be higher up the beach and eventually his sandcastle will be washed away…

  • Toonatic

    He’s bought the old bhs store in derby for probably one of his tat stores

    • Toonatic

      As there is a sports direct already in derby I would think it’s would be either a hof or an evans cycles

  • London_Mag

    Its clearly so he can use it as an excuse not to spend in Jan

    • nufcslf

      Even more or less saying so. What a piece of filth he is. Unbelievable.

  • FatParosite

    Guess which rag will be pumping this PR message…??? We are surrounded by kernts.

  • Dillon Tovak

    It gets the pulse racing at the thought but I’ll believe it when I see it.
    I also don’t trust his wording, talks are further than they’ve ever been?
    You’re reading of this comment is more progressed than it’s ever been.
    Maybe I’m reading too much into that and he’s not quite that smart with his phraseology?

    Sell sell sell!!!! Ashley out!

  • Dingus

    Lies

  • Mr_Kinnear

    From a business point of view selling does not make sense. He paid approx 50 mil for the club. He has loaned 150 mil. So if he did sell for 300 mil then he gets all of his money back plus a big profit. That is the end of thd NUFC cash cow.I expect even if he has only taken 10 mil a year for 11 years he’s still made 110 mil AND still owns all of the Assets.he can still make millions over the next 10 years and keep the club. He has free worldwide adverting and tied up club merchandising.Has the club ever really been up for sale?

  • nufcslf

    What a total f**king snake in the grass the pryk is. You have to hope there is something to it, or it really will be the end of ‘Newcastle United’ as we know it if he stays. [email protected]…….

  • Steviemagpie

    Look at his pic seen better looking warthogs . 🐃🐖

  • jinkyjimnufc

    Why dosnt the Chronicle (our newspaper – for what it’s worth). Stomp-up a front page headline – “More lies from Mike Ashley”. And help us out with some meaningful publicity

  • Mirandinha9

    I see Modric has won the Ballon d’Or. Cashley’s regime in 2007/08 thought he couldn’t physically deal with the challenge of the Premier League. 🤔. Symbolic of how clueless Cashley and his cronies over the years have been.

    I feel this is another regurgitated tale from Cashley ‘s team. We shall only believe that he has a desire to sell this club, at the point at which it is sold.

  • Brian Standen

    The question was not asked because Sky and Ashley have a bit of a thing going on- he rarely speaks in public but when he does it’s ALWAYS to Sky!
    Subject in hand? Is it genuine ? The fact he has come out publically suggests it is but with him you never know!
    Believe it when I see it!

    • Cockneytrev

      Grow up,,
      It’s all ballocks,, remember his famous horse before the cart speech? Yeah all he said that day came to fruitaion as well,,
      He does it to deflect an issue and sky play right into his hands ,,

      • Brian Standen

        Which is what I said. Read back!

        BELIEVE IT WHEN I SEE IT

        learn to understand a sentence before you tell someone to grow up!

        • Cockneytrev

          I understand well,,
          Over the years you’ve never come out and slagged him off,,

          • Brian Standen

            Then you have selective memory – if you really read back you will see I detest him as much as anyone!

          • Cockneytrev

            There’s no selective memory on my behalf,,,,

          • Brian Standen

            Look I ain’t getting involved in arguement with someone who has selective memory and limited knowledge! Do you want me to produce every comment or article I have done in support of Ashley – zero!
            Your just another who makes comments and hides behind an alias!
            I have little interest in what you say or think to be fair!

          • Cockneytrev

            An alias,, says someone who apparently meets up for regular drinks with the other nut job from monkseaton,, or is it Moscow?
            Irony lost on you ????

          • Brian Standen

            If he wants to divulge his name that’s up to him – not me or you!
            I get the irony oddly enough but don’t get your aggression – but very happy to indulge your insults!
            Like I say anytime you or anyone wants to meet to discuss I am open about where I drink pre and post match!

          • Cockneytrev

            Look for everyone asleep round you?

          • Brian Standen

            Funny man! Indeed. Quite looking forward to meeting you!

          • Cockneytrev

            I’ll certainly be more interesting than you colleague from monkseaton/Moscow,,,,

          • Brian Standen

            High self praise indeed! Maybe I should be the judge of that – of course unlike you I won’t pre – judge!

          • Cockneytrev

            With out self worth your nothing,,

          • Brian Standen

            We agree on something! Still looking forward though

          • Cockneytrev

            We both know there’s not going to be any meeting ,, so don’t try and make out your this tough guy,,, because anybody can say I’ll meet you in my local/usual watering hole,,I’ve read it at various times on this sight and it’s invariably the gob sites who come out with this openeded bravado….

          • Brian Standen

            First of all get something straight I’m certainly not a tough guy – I am always open to sensibly debate proper NUFC issues with anyone!
            Monk to his credit turned up and we did have a good chat – and it’s true I knew him from days of old!
            What I don’t like is being called ( which you did) for no apparent reason other than you did not like my comment!
            I am not pro Ashley, quite the opposite – initially when he did supporter pleasing stuff like sack Allardyce, appoint Keegan etc I was taken in, but not for long!
            In my eyes he is only in it for one reason, I disagree wholeheartedly with Monk on that but at least we can talk sensibly about it!
            As for open ended bravado, I leave myself very open, it’s my real name and my photo so anyone wanting to take a cheap shot at me has an advantage! I simply trust my instincts and hope that EVERYONE, whatever side of the fence is on is open to sensible debate!

          • Cockneytrev

            Ok,,,, point taken,,

          • Guest

            Brian, you are a better man than me.
            How or why you put up with this Abuse for daring to have an opinion is beyond me
            You don’t come across as a wind up man, simply a guy with an view
            Just make up a name like we all do and save yourself the grief
            May be your abusers should submit an article. Everyone is free to share their views

          • Brian Standen

            I’m quite cool with it, like I keep saying everyone is entitled to an opinion, but far too many insults and abuse on here!
            Maybe I am boring lol

          • Brian Standen

            And. For the record back your point up with some substance instead of just spouting!
            I work in London often so have to put up with inane comments from fans of all different clubs, Man Utd being particularly prevalent! Your name obviously suggests you have that heritage, so tell me, why NUFC, is it family history or were you a jumper onto the Keegan bandwagon – if it’s the latter that would explain a lot!

          • Cockneytrev

            Born in heaton
            Lived in Newcastle my whole life apart from when I had to work away,,
            So another one of your inane theories shot down in flames,,
            I would hazard a guess that the comments your receive in London Is because your a boring pr1ck and has nothing to do with any footballing allegence you have,,

          • Brian Standen

            Brave man eh ?
            Any time you wanna discuss you know where I will be!

          • Cockneytrev

            And where’s that?

          • Brian Standen

            So clearly you have got a selective memory because I reference it all the time, it’s how Monk got in touch with me by just turning up after a game!
            I’m in peppers from about 1.30 until about 2.30 before hand and after up until about 6.30 before moving on!
            As previously mentioned I’m comfortable meeting anyone

  • Themoscow72

    A £300M bid was always going to be enough for a sale to go through which will cover his costs and he will get his money back. However not only could the new owners be worse but the team could be in a poor position if the protesters continue to disrupt the team in the stadium. If we go down the Magpie Group will have played a big part unsettling not Ashley but the players. Be ironic if we went down and the new owners did not get us up at the first attempt so well done to the protesters.
    Wonder if them eight layabouts from London will be at the match tonight or Everton Wednesday Wolves Sunday. Do not make me laugh.

    • Coble’s Return

      Do you know what Moscow, it is just possible that a new owner might be worse, but I would roll the dice on that one. I can’t begin to understand your position in relation to Ashley – his lies and deceit are worthy enough of contempt, but his 11 years of ownership have been awful. I am sure that you and I share a love of the club, match days and everything else that goes with it. I am going to Everton tomorrow night (I will only do away games now) but the excitement and anticipation is a shadow of what it used to be, purely because Ashley has cheapened everything about Newcastle United. We are the Poundland of the EPL. So yes – a new owner might turnout to be worse, but there is every chance under the sun that they would be one hell of a lot better.

      • Themoscow72

        The excitement is always there for me even the days when crowds were down to seven thousand and had a row to myself. Really looking forward to tonight as well as Wednesday and even more Sunday as the protesters will be absent. If the protesters think there is a load of money to spend on players I can you they is not. Be round £40m at best. However the good news is that there is round £80m owed from player sales and very little out. I have been through the accounts and indeed except for perhaps this season every penny and more has been spent.

        • Coble’s Return

          You have missed or avoided the point. Of course the match still holds some excitement or tens of thousands wouldn’t trudge on up to SJP every other weekend. The standard on the pitch has a bearing on this though, as does the general gloom that we will never challenge for anything as long as Ashley remains.

          I really have no interest in mulling over how much will be made available for player transfers – there is no greater futile an argument when it come to NUFC. The points I was making was about Ashley himself and the likelihood of a new incumbent being as bad or worse. Ashley represents a depressing cocktail – a liar at worst and serial bullsh!itter at best, shrewd enough but absolutely focussed on his retail empire – at a crippling cost to NUFC. If a new owner were to take over the club and show even the slightest interest in its history, its present and future, in the city and the region, then what a step up that would be.

        • Toon Arnie

          Two questions ;
          1.Have we spent the Andy Carroll money yet ?
          2. Will you grit your teeth and stay for the full 90 minutes on Sunday for a change ?

          Support the team not Ashley

  • Toon

    If it is typical Ashley tricks unfortunately some of our fans will fall for it, I’m guessing the ones who will refuse to boycott – another excuse for apathy, as if they need one! Remember, support the team not the regime with your season ticket money which goes straight to Uncle Mike

  • HarryHype59

    Ashley is going nowhere! The club is sold rumours , are rolled out every window, so the fat snake can justify spending next to nothing on new players.

  • jinkyjimnufc

    60 years ago my mam said there was a Santa Clause – I’m still f*ckin waiting! Can you spot the parallels? Just get him in a coffin!!!

  • magpiefifer

    Spherical objects!!!
    Ashley really thinks we are all zipped up the back!!!

  • Kneebotherm8

    Mike Ashley talking to Sky News:
    “I am hopeful for the Newcastle fans, for the club, for everybody, that I will be able to step aside and we will be able to get an owner in that can please everybody.”
    ‘When will that be?’
    “When would I like it to be?
    “I would like it to be before the January transfer window.”

    Well I reckon Mike is telling the truth for once……………it’s just that it’ll not be this January transfer window………..more like 9 or 10 years down the line……….if we’re lucky…………FLCB…..

  • deadtrail 74

    Will he, won’t he? If he is true to form then this is just a tactic to side track the protests. Even though the protest didn’t get much support, to turn off the TV’s under the stands and not go to match. And now say the club is up for sale is a massive reaction to a small protest. I feel it’s just a convenient excuse for not investing in the transfer market. I hope I’am wrong but the form book doesn’t agree.