According to The Times, TV piracy row between Saudi Arabia and Qatar could hit Newcastle United takeover bid, as the Premier League could be opposed to the deal going through.
Saudi’s BeoutQ has been accused of pirating content from Qatar-based BeIn Sports, with the government allegedly aware of it and sponsoring it, hence their decision not to take any action since it started in 2017 despite complaints from the EPL, FIFA and UEFA last July.
The Public Investment Funds is overseeing the £340 million takeover of Newcastle, and a Premier League insider believes that a Saudi Royal family funding the move would present an interesting challenge given the present political climate.
It is unknown if that could have a say during the ongoing Premier League’s owners’ and directors’ test, but the English top-flight frowns against piracy, and conduct outside the United Kingdom that would constitute an offence is a factor considered while carrying out the test.
Concerns about Saudi’s human rights record could also play a major role during the test, but the Premier League aren’t likely to make any statement until they get informed by Newcastle that the takeover has reached an advanced stage, and it will be interesting to see what happens when things get to that point.
Magpies owner Mike Ashley finally wants to sell, and the fans are eager to see his back after an unimpressive 13-year tenure, but will Amanda Staveley and co. manage to get this across the finish line?