Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund are set to takeover Newcastle United in a £300 million deal, with an official announcement expected before the end of this month.
Magpies owner Mike Ashley has been in charge of the club since 2007, and he isn’t popular with the fans for plenty of reasons.
Newcastle supporters can’t wait for the PiF to take over the club despite Amnesty International’s and beIN Sports’ protests.
Saudi’s human rights records and alleged support of broadcasting piracy have both threatened to block the deal from going through, with the kingdom’s attempt to own Newcastle widely dubbed “sportswashing”.
Despite the concerns, the Premier League is expected to approve the takeover, and it’s believed the Directors’ and Owners’ test will be passed.
Sky Sports pundit and Manchester United legend Gary Neville has weighed in with his opinion of the prospective Newcastle takeover, replying a fan thus on Twitter when asked about it:
We either adopt a policy of working with nations to improve policies we don’t like or we alienate them until they change to our way. ( we aren’t perfect ) .
I prefer to collaborate and set targets where they change their ways than not communicate / deal with and not impact them https://t.co/zrVoQcOYdL
— Gary Neville (@GNev2) May 9, 2020
Despite Neville’s concerns, it remains to be seen if owning Newcastle will spur Saudi into changing some of their controversial policies, and it will be interesting to see what happens going forward.