There is unlikely to be much happening with the takeover unless and until Newcastle are safe in the Premier League.
We need four wins and 40 points to get to safety so we are hoping we can get all 3 points at Bournemouth on Saturday, but it will not be easy against a well-managed side.
So since around Christmas time, there has not been too much real news about the takeover, but that should change as we get towards the end of the season and hopefully Rafa (and our gutsy players) can save us from the drop.
The takeover dragged on for almost three months last year once Ashley said he wanted to sell the club.
His stated goal was to sell the club by Christmas, but that didn’t materialize, and he has said he will not accept the offer on the table from Amanda Staveley of £250M cash up front.
Rafa Benitez – at the moment he is Newcastle United
But with the new UK Premier League TV rights deal less than the existing one of £5.1B, that offer from Staveley now looks a more attractive one for Ashley.
There is a phantom second bidder reported in the local papers, and maybe they will show themselves before the summer.
But at this moment we would estimate the chances of a takeover happening before July to be low.
The likelihood is there will be no takeover by the time the summer transfer window gets underway.
Then the question will be whether Mike Ashley give Rafa good money to spend this summer.
If he does give Rafa say £70M to spend plus whatever he can get from outgoing transfers, Rafa will be happy enough.
That’s because he’s been so constrained by Ashley over the last three transfer windows.
By the summer hopefully, Rafa will also have been able to persuade Ashley and Charnley to change the way Newcastle do the transfers – a change is badly needed.
We need to be more decisive and much quicker in the way we do deals.
And if Slimani and Dubravka do well in the final 11 games we could have two quick signings right there.
It will be more challenging to get Kenedy in permanently – perhaps a season-long loan deal can be negotiated for him?
Rafa will want to get deals done quickly whoever the owner is.
But even if Ashley remains for the time being – as long as he gives Rafa decent money to spend in the summer then Benitez should be fine.
Slowly but surely Rafa continues to rebuild the team and the club.
Ashley has said he wants to tie Rafa down to a long-term deal at Newcastle – apparently to protect his own investment in the club.
If that happens and Rafa has money to spend this summer that will be a much better position Rafa has been in for the last year or so on Tyneside.
And of course, we are hoping Ashley will sell the club and all those Sports Direct signs – there are 2 million of them by our estimate – will finally be taken down.
Wonder what St. James’ Park will look like without all those ghastly signs?