And while Douglas remains doubtful over a new owner any time soon, he has suggested that the club is technically for sale.
Writing on a live blog for the Chronicle (12.25), he said: “I am adopting the same ‘believe it when I see it’ approach to others now.
“The club remains on the market but Ashley is not actively seeking out buyers.
“There remain doubts from some close to the process whether he’s a particularly easy man to deal with, but the club insist it would be an ‘easy deal’ for someone with money to do.”
This saga rumbles on and on and on. Incredibly, it even seems to be able to trudge along when there is nothing concrete or substantial to fuel it. That shows just how desperately the Toon Army want a deal to be concluded, but any hopes of a buyout going through any time soon should probably be abandoned. The spanner in the works, as has been the case for the past decade, is Ashley himself. He may claim that a deal is there for the taking for somebody who meets his requirements, but you increasingly get the feeling that his requirements are very changeable, and almost unattainable things. The fact of the matter is that as long as the club is turning him a profit, Ashley will stick around, and you fear that the only thing that might persuade him to relinquish his grip on the Magpies may be relegation. Is that a price worth paying to get him out of the club? It’s certainly a conundrum that every Toon fan Weill has considered.