As it stands, Mike Ashley wants to sell Newcastle United to Amanda Staveley’s consortium. That is the only deal he is interested in.
The Sports Direct tycoon agreed a deal to sell the Magpies last year, but the Premier League provided a stumbling block.
The role of the Public Investment Fund and potential involvement of Mohammed Bin Salman caused an issue for the Premier League.
While the consortium provided evidence to prove they were separate entities, the Premier League continued to stall on the Owners’ and Directors’ Test.
That forced PIF to walk away in July last year, leading to Mike Ashley’s legal battle against the Premier League.
In his eyes, the club has been sold. He just needs the Premier League to approve the deal.
He remains committed to selling to PCP Capital Partners, and no one else.
But what about other parties interested in buying the Magpies?
According to the Athletic, there are other groups keen on buying the club – but they state that is always the case.
They report that other possible buyers are being kept informed on what is happening, but ‘at a distance’ via Ashley’s ‘fixer’ Justin Barnes.
Is Ashley’s desperation to sell to the Saudis potentially damaging? Perhaps another deal could have been completed in this time by someone else.
Of course, we will never know as we do not know who else is interested in buying the club.
But Ashley wants to sell the PCP Capital Partners. They can pay him in ‘hard cash’, and it could allow him to tap into the Middle East market.
Meanwhile, other possible buyers are being forced to wait in the wings. They will be waiting eagerly to see what arbitration brings, just like the supporters.