My Soccer World

Football: Newcastle No Longer For Sale, Says Owner Ashley

Posted on: December 28, 2008

NEWCASTLE, England : English Premiership club Newcastle United is no longer for sale, owner Mike Ashley said Sunday after failing to find a buyer.

The billionaire sportswear magnate has decided to push ahead with his own plans for the club following a fruitless three-month campaign to find an interested party.

Ashley engaged the services of investment bank Seymour Pierce after deciding to call it a day at St James’ Park in September following mass protests against his regime in the wake of Kevin Keegan’s departure as manager.

Ashley said in a statement on the club’s official website: “I am happy to end the uncertainty the fans may have had about the future direction of Newcastle United.

“I know just how important that is to you.

“I have withdrawn Newcastle United from the market, and for me 2009 will be the year in which we drive the club forward together.

“Even when I haven’t been at games I have remained a keen supporter, kicking and heading every ball and cheering the team on TV and being first to congratulate (manager) Joe (Kinnear) whenever there’s a good result.”

Ashley revealed the club had failed to find a suitable buyer.

“When I took the decision to put the club up for sale in September I made a point of saying two things were very important.

“Firstly any potential buyer would have to show they had the best interests of Newcastle United at heart and had both the commitment and finance to be worthy custodians of such a fine football club before I would even consider doing a deal.

“And secondly, I gave you my word that as long as I remain owner, this club would continue to be run responsibly at all levels. I hope you will accept that I have stood by that pledge.”

Ashley launched a 134.4 million-pound takeover of the club in May last year and has since invested around a further 100 millon pounds in servicing the debt burden and attempting to strengthen the playing squad.

Michael Ord, a spokesman for the Newcastle United Supporters’ Club, insists the news will be unwelcome to many on Tyneside.

“It’s the most unwelcome late Christmas present Newcastle United supporters could have,” he told Sky Sports.

“He needs to start thinking long and hard about what he is saying, because I don’t think Mike Ashley will take Newcastle forward at all.”

– AFP/vm

Channel News Asia

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Football: Newcastle No Longer For Sale, Says Owner Ashley

Posted on: December 28, 2008

NEWCASTLE, England : English Premiership club Newcastle United is no longer for sale, owner Mike Ashley said Sunday after failing to find a buyer.

The billionaire sportswear magnate has decided to push ahead with his own plans for the club following a fruitless three-month campaign to find an interested party.

Ashley engaged the services of investment bank Seymour Pierce after deciding to call it a day at St James’ Park in September following mass protests against his regime in the wake of Kevin Keegan’s departure as manager.

Ashley said in a statement on the club’s official website: “I am happy to end the uncertainty the fans may have had about the future direction of Newcastle United.

“I know just how important that is to you.

“I have withdrawn Newcastle United from the market, and for me 2009 will be the year in which we drive the club forward together.

“Even when I haven’t been at games I have remained a keen supporter, kicking and heading every ball and cheering the team on TV and being first to congratulate (manager) Joe (Kinnear) whenever there’s a good result.”

Ashley revealed the club had failed to find a suitable buyer.

“When I took the decision to put the club up for sale in September I made a point of saying two things were very important.

“Firstly any potential buyer would have to show they had the best interests of Newcastle United at heart and had both the commitment and finance to be worthy custodians of such a fine football club before I would even consider doing a deal.

“And secondly, I gave you my word that as long as I remain owner, this club would continue to be run responsibly at all levels. I hope you will accept that I have stood by that pledge.”

Ashley launched a 134.4 million-pound takeover of the club in May last year and has since invested around a further 100 millon pounds in servicing the debt burden and attempting to strengthen the playing squad.

Michael Ord, a spokesman for the Newcastle United Supporters’ Club, insists the news will be unwelcome to many on Tyneside.

“It’s the most unwelcome late Christmas present Newcastle United supporters could have,” he told Sky Sports.

“He needs to start thinking long and hard about what he is saying, because I don’t think Mike Ashley will take Newcastle forward at all.”

– AFP/vm

Channel News Asia

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