News that Newcastle United expect to discover later today what award will be made to Kevin Keegan, in his multi-million pound claim against the club.
Kevin Keegan – Arbitration panel decision expected today
Keegan is seeking around £10M for constructive dismissal, following his controversial second departure from the Newcastle club in September last year.
Owner Mike Ashley, on behalf of the Newcastle club has counter-sued for £2M, for breach of contract, which is common practice in cases like this.
An FA arbitration panel that met for two weeks and completed their deliberations a week ago today, is expected to deliver its verdict.
Keegan claims he was forced to quit as he did not have any control over transfer policy, while Ashley insists he had agreed, when he rejoined the club a year last January, to work as part of an overall management team.
The management team included Dennis Wise, Director of Football, which spread responsibility to also include the former head of recruitment, Tony Jimenez. Both Dennis and Tony left the club earlier this year.
The Newcastle Journal is reporting that takeover negotiations have come to a grinding halt recently, because of the uncertainty surrounding the size of the award to Kevin.
While reports of £25M were obviously mischievously made up by the gossip press, a full award of £10M to Kevin would be a severe financial blow to the club, at a delicate time.
If we were to hazard a guess at the settlement we would think around £3M would be a fair amount – one year’s wages to Kevin – but if it gets anywhere near the £10M claimed, that would hardly be good, at least not for the club.
Reports last week said that the club would have just 7 days to come up with the money to pay Kevin.
Quite honestly, it seems that most Newcastle fans will just be glad to get this thing behind them, so the club can move on to bigger and better things, like 3 points tomorrow against Bristol City.
But once the settlement is announced, it could well be that the takeover negotiation will resume in earnest, with the possibility that Barry Moat could buy the club before Christmas.