An interesting update on Tuesday morning following the Mike Ashley interview on Monday night.
The Newcastle United owner appearing on Sky News (see below) and talking about how the club could be sold within four weeks.
Tuesday sees The Mail give a follow on piece, saying that their information is that Mike Ashley is in talks with two different buyers, though there could possibly be more.
The NUFC owner’s words on an imminent sale of the club, came at the end of a detailed interview about his retail business and the problems facing the high street. Ashley having appeared at a House of Commons Select Committee earlier in the day where he was quizzed by MPs.
However, The Mail say that the Newcastle United part of the Sky News interview wasn’t expected, with Mike Ashley having came out with it to the surprise of both Sky and the people around him.
The Mail say that his off-script words on selling Newcastle United were because he wants to hurry along the investors he is currently talking to, whilst also making clear to any other potential interested parties, that he definitely wants to sell the club as soon as possible.
The newspaper though says that this move could have had a negative effect, as they say their information is that one of the two (supposedly) known interested buyers, wanted the fact the club be imminently sold, not to be made public.
A little hard to understand that one unless/until they are named by a credible source.
On the positive side, The Mail claim that Ashley’s supposed £300m asking price isn’t a problem for those interested in buying him out.
Newcastle fans have predictably laughed at the Mike Ashley interview as just the latest bit of PR from the owner and part of a policy for him to justify not supporting Rafa Benitez in the January transfer window BUT the newspaper claim that this definitely isn’t the case.
With all of the newspapers saying they had recently heard repeated claims of an imminent sale being on the cards and credible buyers being out there. If a sale doesn’t happen (yet again) then it would surely be a case of fans being right in any aftermath of a no deal, that this has been just another set of misleading rumours put out by the NUFC owner’s own people.
As always, hope for the best but fear the worst.
The Mag – 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.
“It’s possible” – Mike Ashley says he is in talks to sell Newcastle United in a deal he hopes will go through before the January transfer window
— Sky News (@SkyNews) December 3, 2018
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.”