Newcastle United fans embark on London transparency protest – with politicians and the Premier League in their sights

Around 100 Newcastle United fans are this morning making the 10-hour round trip to London to call for takeover transparency.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 6:00 am
A general view inside the stadium as fans return during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Sheffield United at St. James Park on May 19, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. A limited number of fans will be allowed into Premier League stadiums as Coronavirus restrictions begin to ease in the UK. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

The NUFC Transparency Protest group set off from St James’ Park at 5am this morning, taking a number of buses of fans down to the capital to protest against what is being seen as a lack of transparency from the Premier League in the Newcastle United takeover process.

Buyer – the PCP Consortium – and seller – Mike Ashley – have openly called for the top flight to make the impending takeover arbitration public.

And while one side firmly agree with playing the legal process out in the public domain, the Premier League have held firm in their belief the arbitration should remain private.

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A prominent member of the buying consortium, Amanda Staveley, has publicly called for fans to demand transparency, calls backed on social media by her husband and fellow PCP Capital Partners director Merhdad Ghodoussi, Ashley’s arbitration QC Nick De Marco and the football club themselves.

This has led the protest group to formulate a plan, which will see fans conduct a peaceful march on both Parliament Square and Premier League HQ.

One of the group organisers, Peter Clennell, said: “We want to be seen and heard by as many people as possible but would look to engage with MP’s specifically if the opportunity arises.

“We believe it can make a difference however slight.”

A number of fan groups have backed the plans, with Wor Flags donating banners for use as well as the Newcastle United Supporters Trust said to have thrown their weight behind the project privately.