The Reuben Brothers have joined Amanda Staveley in putting out a statement that they remain committed to the Saudi-backed takeover should it get revived. Amanda Staveley made her stance known almost immediately after a statement was released that the Saudis had backed out of the deal last week.
Here is the statement from Martin Cruddace, CEO of the Reuben Brothers’ Arena Racing Company, as published in The Chronicle:
“As owners of Gosforth Park and Newcastle Racecourse Arena companies we were very disappointed to learn that the bid to take over Newcastle football club had been withdrawn given our shareholders the Reuben Brothers were to be an integral part of the deal.
“We had many plans for our ventures and sport in the North East. We were planning on creating one of the premier sporting hubs in the UK, undertaking development work that is vital to the region and enjoying valuable synergies with the football club.
“We continue to hope that those exciting plans are not in vain. We would welcome any resurrection of talks and progress with the Premier League and are aware that the Reuben Brothers remain totally supportive of the deal should there be a way forward.”
While it’s a good gesture from the Reuben Brothers to affirm that they are on board with any resurrection of the Saudi-backed bid, it really changes very little currently.
The only way this deal can be salvaged is for the Saudis to get back on board. They will not do that without assurances from the Premier League that they have a chance of passing the owners’ and directors’ tests – and that they’ll get around to making a decision.
This seems unlikely right now as the league seemed all to content to just let the process linger for many more months without having to make a decision. While the Saudis have made mistakes in banning beIN Sports followed by appealing the WTO findings, the Premier League has seemed reluctant to tackle this situation head-on.
If Saudi Arabia’s recent actions have hindered the process then the Premier League should release a statement saying so. Otherwise, there’s no closure and the fans are left in limbo with what could be just another false dawn.
We bring you Exhibit A.
— Michael Chopra (@MichaelChopra) August 3, 2020
Right now, an independent review could be the best path forward as something seems very rotten in Denmark with the way the league has handled this takeover.
Note – here’s a petition to sign to get an independent review of the EPL Takeover process – please sign it – thanks.