Newcastle United transfer news: Bin Zayed Group 'buoyant' on takeover as Rafa Benitez to China confirmed

The Sheikh Khaled-led Bin Zayed Group remain ‘buoyant’ on a Newcastle United takeover, according to a Middle East journalist.

Monday, 1st July 2019, 6:08 pm
Updated Monday, 1st July 2019, 7:08 pm

Peter Redding, of Dubai-based Capital Radio, took to social media today to claim BZG could well release a "statement in the next few days" on the proposed takeover.

Redding goes on to say the group remain “buoyant” with the deal continuing to progress.

The Gazette understands that could even be as soon as tomorrow. The content of the statement, which has already been drafted, is not known, though.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 11: General view outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Manchester United at St. James Park on February 11, 2018 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

It could be in connection with the story over the weekend from the Mirror, that Sheikh Khaled’s group had an influence on the decision to allow Benitez to leave.

Confusion surrounds where the deal stands, with no solid information on whether the owners and directors test – known by some as the ‘fit and proper persons test’ – has started yet, or not. This is understood to have been the cause of the logjam in progress.

The Spaniard, whose United deal ended on Sunday, is expected to be unveiled as the Chinese outfit’s new boss at 7am (2pm local time), according to various reports in the Far East media.

In an interview with the Times, Benitez has opened up on his failed negotiations with Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley.

“I was expecting we would finish the meeting and everything would be done,” he said.

“That was my thought. I thought I would be staying.

“Common sense says you’ve been successful on the pitch, you’d reached the target the club wanted which was to stay in the Premier League and the same in terms of business – they’d made a profit. Any owner would surely say ‘OK, on and off the pitch, you’ve delivered, so this will be an easy conversation’ and then you try to finalise the details. And it was not like that.”

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