Whether there’s any truth in the stories or not we are likely to see increased coverage in the gossip press on the potential sale of Newcastle United, and for good reason.
Barry Moat – only game in town according to Seymour Harris
Things seem delicately positioned right now because an obvious impediment to buying the club has now been removed.
We didn’t realize it until Friday that Keegan and his people were claiming £25M against the club, and that being the case, however unlikely that award would be, no decent pragmatic businessman would touch Newcastle with the club being sued for that amount of money.
However, that is no longer the case, and by this Friday Newcastle will have paid Kevin the £2M award he rightly won last Friday, for the nonsense that Wise and Ashley took him through last year.
We know Barry Moat is in there, trying to buy the club, but reports suggest he is not bidding the full £100M, and if that is true, we wouldn’t expect Mike Ashley to sell.
With the club doing so well at the top of the Championship, time is actually now on his side, and Ashley may even bring in reinforcements in the form of loan signings and outright buys in January, if he doesn’t get the £100M offer for the club he wants.
There are reports this morning that Geoff Sheard remains in takeover negotiations with Newcastle, and is supposedly fronting an American bid, but it’s hard to know if there’s much truth in this since Seymour Harris says Barry Moat’s bid is the only valid one that exists right now, and have even recommended Mike accept it.
The bidders are said to be an American Investment Group and the bid is being managed by the Manchester legal firm of Halliwells.
News this morning that Sheard is saying that Halliwells now have proof the New York-based investment group have the necessary money to buy the club – but we wonder if this is a continuing publicity stunt by Sheard.
Newcastle fans will have to hope that a deal can be completed quickly, but it’s now over 4 months since Newcastle were put up for sale, for a second time.
It’s now just past the total length of time the club was on sale last year, before Ashley took it off the market, we were then hammered 5-1 by Liverpool that Sunday afternoon (Dec 28th) at St. James’ Park, and then Shay Given wanted out.
What Mike will do now is anybody’s guess but if he keeps the club, the Ashley stigma will continue to be a burden on Newcastle United, and that cannot be good.