While Rafa Benitez’s departure has dominated the talk on Tyneside, the takeover saga is rumbling on in the background.
The potential sale of the club appeared to put contract talks with Rafa to one side, but the noises were very positive. There was even talk that a new owner would want to keep Benitez at the club.
But here we are, with Benitez set to leave when his deal ends this Sunday. The club confirmed the news on Monday, but there has still been no official word on a possible takeover.
Fans have been left in limbo. They know the manager won’t be Benitez, but the ownership of the club has still been clouded in mystery, leading most to expect that Mike Ashley will remain in the hotseat.
Ashley seeks clarity on possible Newcastle takeover
But Wednesday has brought an update of sorts from the Press Association (Chronicle live blog, 4pm, 26/06/2019). With the club now looking for a new manager, the report states that the search will be dependent on the state of the takeover.
Ashley is reportedly ‘seeking clarity’ on the deal, with his representatives having conducted talks with the Bin Zayed Group in recent weeks.
According to the Press Association, a conclusion to the takeover saga is ‘several weeks if not months away’, which could force Newcastle to appoint a short-term manager.
So the managerial appointment might tell us a lot about a possible takeover.
Are Newcastle really going to hand a long contract and change the blueprint of the club if it could be under new ownership in the near future? Would a short-term but potentially uninspiring choice actually be good news and suggest a takeover is on the horizon?
Yet again, there are more questions than answers.