Newcastle United takeover: Michael Chopra claims he found Saudi Arabian 'royal' buyer - but Mike Ashley blocked deal
Former Newcastle United striker Michael Chopra claims he found a Saudi Arabian ‘royal’ buyer for the Magpies – but the deal went dead with Mike Ashley’s lawyers.
And that’s led Chopra to question whether Sports Direct tycoon Ashley really wants to sell the club.
“I found a guy in Saudi Arabia at the end of last year who was very interested in buying the club," Chopra told TalkSPORT.
“We spoke to Lee Charnley and he put us in touch with Andrew Henderson, Mike Ashley’s lawyer.
“We called him up, we wanted the mandate from Andrew Henderson to speak to the guy in Saudi about buying the club. Andrew Henderson said if he’s got that much money, is a royal out there, tell him to fly to London to see me.
“From that, I get that they don’t really want to sell the club. They wouldn’t give a mandate to someone who has found a buyer for the club.”
And Chopra thinks the latest summer failings – in which they’ve lost Rafa Benitez, failed to replace him, lost Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez – will see United fans vote with their feet.
“Even in the Championship Newcastle sold out – but I think that will stop, the fans have had enough,” he said.
“The fans are putting their foot down. In 2003 you had 12,000 fans travelling to the San Siro, now you’ve got 12,000 season tickets unsold.
“It a disease. Every year it is getting worse and worse.
“Do I personally think he wants to sell the club? I don’t think so.”