Ex-Manchester United chief asked if the takeover of Newcastle United is 'back on' after European Super League shambles

Former Newcastle United bidder Peter Kenyon was asked if the proposed takeover of the Tyneside outfit is “back on” after the European Super League failed to materialise.

Friday, 23rd April 2021, 7:00 am

Twelve of Europe’s ‘top’ clubs – including Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Tottenham – signed up a new European competition but withdrew 48 hours later following condemnation from the likes of FIFA, UEFA, the Premier League, the UK Government and supporters worldwide.

Former Chelsea and Manchester United chief executive Kenyon, with the help of Joseph DaGrosa’s GACP Sports, last tried to purchase the Magpies in 2019 but ultimately fell short. DaGrosa exclusively told the Gazette last year that the consortium “were actually a bit further along than most people realised”.

PCP Partners, The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia and the Reuben brothers have agreed a £300million+ deal with Mike Ashley to buy Newcastle, which is still awaiting the green light with the Premier League and the club locked in arbitration proceedings.

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Former Manchester United and Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon tried to buy Newcastle United in 2019. (Photo by Jack Dabaghian/Getty Images)

According to The Athletic’s Matt Slater, the prospect of a European Super League had brought a number of takeover conversations in England to a halt. Kenyon, who continues to advise on potential takeovers, was asked by Slater: “Newcastle, is it back on for them?”

Kenyon, speaking to the Business of Sport podcast on The Athletic, replied: "Yeah because the uncertainty of...I mean people were buying into those clubs whether you're a Championship moving to Premiership or you're a Premiership," he said.

"People are not buying into those clubs for relegation or seeing that, because of what else is happening, their revenues are going to go from 100 to 50.

"They're buying in for this aspirational, 'I can be part of that. I can be part of the future. The future's bright. The future's more successful - whatever the measure of success is'.

"What this thing did is stop all that in its tracks. I'm pretty sure that whether it's the sponsorship agreement, whether it was the broadcasting agreement, whether it was a bank loan or it was someone looking at buying, all that just got put on hold because people don't invest in uncertainty.

"To that point, I think it is certain now in that there ain't going to be a breakaway. There's going to be a Premier League and if this was a whole testing the water as to whether it could be, it's been an abject failure.

"So let's put it behind us. Let's start healing ASAP because that's needed and let's get on with it."

Newcastle were among the 14 Premier League clubs to “unanimously and vigorously reject” plans of a European Super League after a meeting with top-flight CEO Richard Masters on Tuesday afternoon.

Potential Newcastle United takeover investor Mehrdad Ghodouss, husband to Amanda Staveley, tweeted after the six English sides backed out of the ESL proposal: “A huge lesson learnt over the last 48hrs. It's a tough job owning a club, no doubt about it, mistakes will be made. Run your clubs well, make money, increase the value of your investment, but never forget what it’s really all about. #PremierLeague.”

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