At least two other parties are interested in buying Newcastle United alongside the Bin Zayed Group, according to the Times journalist Duncan Castles.
The Dubai-based consortium have been heavily linked with a buyout of the Magpies in recent weeks, but Castles claims that they are not the only group in the running.
“There’s at least two more groups attempting to do a takeover at present, but both of them have financial issues in terms of raising cash from members of the consortium to do the deal.
“Also, there’s discussion over whether Ashley’s valuation of the club, which is £250m for the equity and taking on about £100m of debt, which he is owed by the club, so effective price of £350m, whether that is reasonable or not.”
It’s hard to tell whether this is good news or not, to be honest. Conventional wisdom would suggest that the more parties you have interested in buying a club, the more likely it is to be sold, but the fact that the Bin Zayed Group are still facing competition would perhaps suggest that they are not in as advanced a position as they claim to be. If a deal was approaching the latter stages, you would assume that the party would have exclusivity, but Castles’ claims show that they don’t. Already we are at the tail end of June, and even if some kind of substantial breakthrough can be made, what are the chances of a deal being tied up in time for any sort of notable progress to be made in the transfer window this summer? Almost certainly none. All in all, we’re no further forward, and in many respects, Castles only complicates matters with his latest update.