Newcastle United has confirmed takeover talks between the present club owner and a UAE-based billionaire, who is interested in buying the club. This could change everything for the club that, just two years ago, was playing in the EFL Championship.
Are we going to see another fairy tale title victory like we saw with Leicester in 2015-16?
Who is in the process of buying Newcastle United?
UAE-based billionaire Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the cousin of Manchester City’s owner, offered £350 million to acquire the club. The deal was proposed at an opportune moment as the present owner, Mike Ashley was eager to sell. Limited resources at Tyneside meant slow progress for the club. With the sudden influx of wealth, Newcastle will be hoping to compete for the Premier League title again, after finishing second in 1996 and 1997.
A prominent member of Abu Dhabi’s royal family, Sheikh Khaled has showed interest in owning an English football club for quite some time now. He offered a record £2 billion to acquire Liverpool in mid-2018. However, the deal did not come to fruition as the owner was reluctant to sell the club.
Liverpool repaid their owner’s trust by finishing second in the Premier League and qualifying for the Champions League final, which is scheduled to be played on 1st June at Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid, Spain.
However, Newcastle United will look to follow in the footsteps of Premier League Champions - Manchester City - rather than Liverpool. Bought by Sheikh Mansour in 2008, Manchester City have steadily climbed the ranks to become the best football team in England, if not the world. The primary reason for this rise in stature was the huge influx of wealth into the club by its owner.
Coincidentally, Sheikh Mansour tried to buy Newcastle United in 2008 before he bought Manchester City. At that time, Mike Ashley refused to sell Newcastle. 11 years down the line, Mike Ashley has jumped on the chance to sell the club to Sheikh Mansour’s cousin.
Sheikh Khaled is the President of the Sailing and Rowing Federation in UAE. He is also the founder of the Bin Zayed Group, which is a top business establishment in the Middle East.
The excitement at Tyneside is palpable, as Newcastle fans prepare for an exciting summer transfer market! Rafael Benitez, the manager of Newcastle, maybe happier than most because his wish to have quality players at the club will not be thwarted by financial deficiency. The manager will have enough and more resources at his disposal to create a competent team.
Will it be enough to challenge for the title? That remains to be seen, but Newcastle’s acquisition will certainly up the competition for the Premier League title.Published 27 May 2019, 16:04 IST