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Opinion

The questions we never hear asked about the Newcastle United takeover

4 months ago
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With the Newcastle United takeover, there has been a lot of talk but not much said.

When it comes to newspapers and the rest of the media, you don’t get a lot else other than two big extremes.

Firstly, whether or not the deal will be blocked due to human rights issues and / or TV piracy allegations.

Secondly, the media coming up with an ever growing list of high profile expensive players that the new owners are allegedly already in the process of sorting deals with.

Especially with the actual football suspended at the minute, there is even more media focus on this Newcastle United takeover, so everybody wants to have a part of it. You just get the same stories / angles published time after time, repeated from elsewhere but with a different headline.

It is just the way of the (media) world now, why bother trying to think of something different / original, why bother scraping below the surface, why bother looking at things from another angle?

There are a number of compelling questions / angles that have been pretty much totally ignored by the media.

Manchester United

I totally understand the big story surrounding the alleged ‘sports washing’, the Saudis claimed to be using Newcastle United to improve their image, deflecting from human rights issues.

HOWEVER, I very much don’t understand how at the same time the media can completely ignore the fact that this has been happening for 12 years already at Manchester United.

The Man Utd commercial deal with state owned Saudi Telecom is the longest running of all commercial partners for this club, starting in 2008 and still going now.

Then in 2017, Man Utd launched another revenue stream from the Saudi regime, ‘the General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia’ in partnership with Manchester United.

Man Utd taking fortunes for 12 years already from the Saudi state, in return for helping them improve their image and promote them as something other than human rights abusers. Why aren’t Miguel Delaney and the rest now attacking these massive commercial deals and indeed, where has the media campaign been these past 12 years?

The homegrown super rich

Am I the only one who finds it incredible that the Reuben brothers rate barely more than a one line mention in any report?

Yes the Saudi PIF has massive financial muscle but shouldn’t the fact that one of the richest families in the UK are investing in Newcastle United, be a massive story on its own?

In the most recent (2019) Sunday Times rich list, Simon and David Reuben (pictured above) were second highest with a family fortune of close to £20billion.

It is staggering that no journalists have seemingly even bothered digging into their involvement, or approaching them, or failing that people who know them and / or have had dealings with them. I thought that was what journalists did, or at least used to.

The Reuben brothers again

One aspect of the intended takeover I find intriguing, is the very different backgrounds of the parties.

How is it not a massive story that the Saudis are buying a football club with Jewish business partners?

It is newsworthy surely, especially after I just double checked what the actual situation is in Saudi Arabia. Islam is the state religion of Saudi Arabia and public worship of religions other than Islam are forbidden. Any non-Muslim attempting to acquire Saudi Arabian nationality must convert to Islam.

So Muslims and Jews working together to buy Newcastle United isn’t a story? Strange.

I don’t see any negative connotations on this angle, as surely it should be seen as a positive when people from different religions are working together? Unless I am missing something?

Mike Ashley

Newcastle fans are in the firing line daily.

The media demanding that we stop this takeover happening due to the human rights issues and so on. That apparently it is our duty as supporters to block it, or else otherwise be seen as backing what goes on in Saudi Arabia. Newcastle fans called on to demonstrate against the Saudis and call them out on how the regime operates.

Amazing…because at the same time, I haven’t seen any journalist or newspaper go after Mike Ashley.

After all, he is the one who will be putting £300m+ of Saudi money in his back pocket when this deal happens.

So Newcastle fans are demonised for something that they have no say or vote on, yet the person who stands to massively profit from this Newcastle United takeover, doesn’t even have his motivations questioned by the media. Why isn’t Ashley relentlessly pursued by the media as to how he can take £300m+ from the Saudi regime?

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