Sir John Hall thinks that Mike Ashley is serious about selling Newcastle United and only last month there was news that Ashley had reduced his price to £300M for Newcastle.
But it doesn’t seem like anybody is rushing to buy Newcastle and what we definitely don’t want to see is a long drawn out sale – that could affect the players as it seemed to do last season.
Sit John has said he knows there has been interest in the club but nobody has yet met the price Ashley is asking – probably because the club is overpriced.
Sir John Hall – former Newcastle Chairman
The Chronicle are relaying comments today from Sir John Hall which he made during an appearance at a Newcastle Legends event in aid of the West End Food Bank:
“I think he is serious in his intention to sell, but there aren’t many people with the sort of money to buy it off him. There certainly isn’t in the North East, anyway,”
“There has definitely been interest in the club, I know that, but clearly nobody has yet given him the price he wants.”
“If you have fallen out of love with your business, you have to sell – and I think Mike’s fallen out of love with Newcastle.”
“If someone wants to buy a football club, they will come along and do it. It won’t be a long, drawn-out process done in public.”
“But, until someone offers what Mike wants – whatever figure that is – then the club won’t be sold.”
“People coming into football now do so not because they love football, but because they smell money.”
“But, when it comes to Newcastle, you will need to spend £300M or £400M to buy the club.”
“And then another £500M over five years to really make the club competitive if you want to change Newcastle’s fortunes.”
“It’s not just about who comes along; there has to be success or they have to be able to bring success.”
“He (Ashley) had the intentions of taking the club forward. That’s what he told me, anyway.”
“He told me he wanted to use the club to help grow his business in East Asia, which I thought would benefit everyone because it would mean Newcastle United would gain a wider fan base, and grow too.”
“But things went wrong – he received some bad advice which led him to make poor decisions – and he’s never been able to wrestle that back.”
“I’m sad it hasn’t happened how he thought it might.”
So are all Newcastle fans.
It really is a significant financial commitment in Newcastle for a new owner to make.
The thing on our side is we have the best fan base in the game, and even if a big conglomerate came in to buy the club, we wouldn’t lose our identity – as happened with Manchester City.
A club without a soul but with lots of money.
But it seems there are not too many buyers willing to invest in the club.
That could change at any time, and a real buyer intent on owning Newcastle would be able to close the deal quickly – that’s usually what happens.