All was quiet on the May bank holiday, until the Sun’s Justin Allen claimed that Newcastle United were set to be sold.
At about 11pm on May 27th 2019, a report emerged that a takeover was close. The Sun claimed that terms had been agreed for the Bin Zayed Group to buy Newcastle from Mike Ashley for £350 million, and that a deal was expected at the ‘earliest opportunity’.
It seemed like all our dreams had come at once. Ashley was going and we had new owners who would pump money into the club and lift us to heights we’ve never seen before.
People were dubbing us the new Manchester City. Superstar managers were being lined up. You could get odds on Kylian Mbappe moving to St James’ Park.
Yet here we are, nearly seven months on from that night in May, and Mike Ashley is still owner of Newcastle United. The Bin Zayed Group are nowhere to be seen, unable to get a deal over the line.
For many, this was the last time they’d be burnt by a takeover story. The BZG saga dominated the summer, while Rafa Benitez’s contract ran down in the background. The takeover talk was used to cover up the Spaniard’s departure, but even then there was hope of a deal going through.
It didn’t, and all takeover stories at St James’ Park are batted away in an instance by most supporters. Until a deal is official, a lot of fans aren’t going to fall for it again.
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