Newcastle United are poised to take legal action in their ongoing dispute with the Premier League over the attempted takeover of the club by a Saudi-led consortium.
The Magpies released a statement on Wednesday last week claiming the Premier League had rejected a takeover bid after the Saudi Public Investment Fund had attempted to purchase an 80 per cent stake in the club.
In a statement Newcastle owner, Mike Ashley has accused Richard Masters, the Premier League’s chief executive, of acting inappropriately in blocking the takeover.
Club executives are now taking legal advice as they explore ways of forcing the Premier League to permit a £300m buyout that Ashley maintains Masters had no basis for failing to approve.
The statement from Mike Ashley said: “The club and its owners do not accept that Premier League chief executive Richard Masters and the Premier League have acted appropriately in relation to this matter and will be considering all relevant options available to them.”
The consortium withdrew its offer in July, after waiting 17 weeks for the Premier League to complete its due diligence. However, it is believed that discreet talks have continued in the hope of reviving a controversial deal understood to be supported by the British government.
The Premier League responded, saying it was “surprised and disappointed” by Newcastle’s statement and that it had not rejected the takeover bid, but had asked all the relevant entities involved in the ownership of the club to provide all appropriate information, and should that be provided a potential takeover could then proceed to the next stage.
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