According to Craig Hope of the Daily Mail, Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley has asked Sports Direct’s furloughed staff to take a 10 per cent pay cut from next month.
Newcastle United owner Ashley had placed all staff on furlough during the coronavirus pandemic. And now, even the staff are not working, he has asked them to take five days’ holiday in an effort to manage annual leave.
The Magpies owner has decided to sell the club for a fee of £300 million, a drop-down of £40m from his initial valuation.
The would-be Newcastle United owners – Amanda Staveley’s consortium — comprising her company PCP Capital Partners (10 per cent), the billionaire Reuben brothers (10 per cent) and the 80 per cent majority stakeholding of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) – are currently waiting for Premier League’s approval but they are facing obstacles elsewhere.
The report claims that some of the furloughed staff at the club are hoping that the Premier League will give their thumbs up so that the takeover process can happen at the earliest. The would-be new owners are ready to remove them from the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
Hope has also claimed that Newcastle scouting chief Steve Nickson has been brought back from furlough and he is now working on a list of transfer targets, although any guidelines haven’t been given on the transfer budget.
Many Newcastle United fans have taken to Twitter to express their reaction to Hope’s tweet. Here are some of the selected tweets:
probably taken off furlough so new owners can sack him and hire their own people
— Geordie Joe (@GJ_1892) April 27, 2020
This is disturbing. If he is selling and it's close as reported, why would he do that.? This creates more questions than answers. I can't take another heartbreak. What the fuck is happening?
— Vin Kang (@VinKang27) April 27, 2020
maybe new owners want to hit the ground running and make some statement transfers?
— Paul Volpe 🏴🇿🇦🇺🇸 (@ptvolpe) April 27, 2020
So he can get back to scouting for takeover
— Sean (@Sean55615015) April 27, 2020
It changes nothing, if it wasn’t for the virus he’d have been working and doing the same thing until a sale was official.
— Matthew (@JB4t00n) April 27, 2020
Does this make any sense if takeover is as close as reported?
— David (@GreenGeordie9) April 27, 2020
Bit worring to be honest, his the last person we want back considering the new regime wants to change things top to bottom!!!
— Jay D (@allypally9) April 27, 2020