Newcastle United takeover referenced as Saudi Arabia appeal WTO report

The Newcastle United takeover remains at the centre of the geopolitical dispute between Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Wednesday, 29th July 2020, 9:10 pm
St James's Park.

The report drew a link between “individuals or entities” under the jurisdiction the Saudi state and beoutQ, a pirate TV station which has illegally broadcast Premier League games.

Both sides in the dispute claimed victory in the wake of its publication.

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Doha-based beIN Sports, which has the Premier League rights for the region, but is banned from broadcasting in the kingdom, today issued a strongly-worded statement which referenced the proposed Saudi Arabia-backed takeover of Newcastle, which has been with the Premier League for approval since April.

It read: “Having spent the past six weeks telling the world how the WTO ruling was a ‘complete vindication’, curiously, Saudi Arabia is now appealing a case they say they emphatically won.

"Rather than positively complying with international law, Saudi Arabia has lied to Governments and rights-holders across world sport about the WTO ruling.

"It has said the Premier League, FIFA and UEFA sent their legal case to the wrong Saudi email address nine times. It has permanently banned the Premier League’s broadcast partner, meaning the only way to watch premium sport is via piracy, and now it is appealing a WTO decision that they said they won.

“All the while, Saudi Arabia is essentially trying to pass an honesty, and an anti-piracy test, under the Premier League’s rules, and gain the trust of the international sports community."