Newcastle have broken off talks with an American-based consortium the Star Group, fronted by Lancashire businessman Geoff Sheard.
Mike Ashley – will stay on Tyneside – oh no!
That news is being reported today by the local Sunday Sun, and that leaves just Barry Moat and another American group, as the remaining parties still wanting to buy Newcastle at a cut price £80M.
But it looks almost odds on that Ashley will take the club off the market and appoint Chris Hughton as permanent manager until the end of the season.
Chris’ new wages are nothing to write home about, being just around £260K/year when some of our players are earning £60K/week (Smith, Butt, Barton …) – or £3M a year.
Chris’ new wage is about £5K/week for Hughton which if true, is one of the lowest wages for any manager in the top two leagues in England.
Ashley and Moat held informal talks at St James’ Park yesterday, but we doubt anything will come of it, and look for Ashley to say he is staying at the club, and that has to be terrible news for Newcastle fans.
The news is that Moat offered Ashley less than £40M up front, with the remaining money in guaranteed instalments, but that was last week, and we would expect he has improved on that, but whatever he has come up – it doesn’t seem like it will be successful.
Hughton will agree to a one year deal, with the option of another 12 months. His new wage is about double the £150K/year he was getting at Newcastle as a coach.
Colin Calderwood will also get a new deal at the club, as Chris’ assistant.