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Journalist who broke Newcastle United takeover story replies to fans challenging him

6 months ago
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It is now eight days since the Newcastle United takeover was breaking news.

On Sunday 26 May it was Justin Allen from The Sun who was the journalist that ran the story.

This Monday morning there was an interesting exchange between Allen and Newcastle fans challenging him as to whether the story hods up, based on everything that has (and hasn’t,,,) been said and done since that Sunday night claim of an exclusive.

Justin Allen saying that it is FACT…

“Mike Ashley has agreed to sell the club for.£350m to the Bin Zayed Group. FACT.

“Contracts have been signed. FACT.

“That paperwork is with the Premier League. FACT.

“I also refer you to two public on-the-record statements since I broke the story from the group.”

I just looked up the definition(s) of FACT in the English Oxford Dictionary and is gives:

‘A thing that is known or proved to be true.’

‘Information used as evidence or as part of a report or news article.’

When the journalist talks about the ‘FACTS’, then the second of the definitions definitely works, whilst maybe the first part of the first (‘A thing that is known’) is covered as well.

As for ‘proved to be true’, that is where we run into a few problems.

For Newcastle fans, they would say that nothing has been ‘proved’ so far.

If indeed this story does end up as being shown to be true by subsequent events then fair play to the journalist in question (even if he does work for The Sun…) for breaking the story.

However, history/common sense tells us that nothing will be ‘proved’ until everybody (Newcastle United, Bin Zayed Group, Premier League, Mike Ashley, whoever…) all confirm that a deal is done.

Where Justin Allen’s story does have some added credibility is that the MD of the Bin Zayed Group has made two public statements confirming large parts of the initial newspaper story. So there was a story to be written than is not just yet another pure fabrication but it equalling an actual sale of Newcastle United is a leap of faith for all of us at the moment.

Mike Ashley’s behaviour has also been different this time as in the past he has been quick to rubbish any number of media stories about a supposed sale of Newcastle United, either putting out a statement through the club or directly via himself/his people.

Taking the middle ground, my belief is that we are somewhere between the two positions.

I think there is something happening this time but as for getting anything over the finishing line in terms of a sale of Newcastle United…after these past 12 years I will most definitely only believe it when I see it.

Justin Allen via his Twitter account:

“Mike Ashley has agreed to sell the club for.£350m to the Bin Zayed Group. FACT.

“Contracts have been signed. FACT.

“That paperwork is with the Premier League. FACT.

“I also refer you to two public on-the-record statements since I broke the story from the group.

“Two public statements from the group confirming my story.

In response to ‘So what kind of contract(s) has been signed?’:

“Heads of terms.”

“No denial from the club (Newcastle United).

“No denial from the Premier League.

“Trust me, they publicly shoot down things that are not true!”

In response to ‘Do you not understand that statements from the buyer means fu.. all and Ashley hasn’t confirmed anything…’)

“He (Mike Ashley) hasn’t denied it..”

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