Despite PIF buying the club, Newcastle United could still go down.
The Magpies are rock bottom of the Premier League. They didn’t win this season under Mike Ashley, and that hasn’t changed since the takeover.
While the mood around the club has improved, Newcastle remain in a relegation battle. After 12 games they’ve picked up just six points and are five points adrift of Leeds in 17th.
Newcastle may be one of the richest clubs in the world now, but they could be a Championship side next season if they’re not careful.
But what will the owners, specifically PIF, do if the Magpies are relegated?
The Athletic’s Chris Waugh has spoke about this on the latest Pod On The Tyne podcast, discussing whether or not the owners will lose interest in the club.
What will PIF do?
“No, in fact, quite the opposite I think,” Waugh said when asked if PIF could lose interest.
He went on to add: “They’re long-term investors. That’s one of the key points about PIF. They invest long-term and expect returns long-term.
“You speak to people in and around the consortium or people who deal with PIF and they basically say they will be emboldened to fight back from that. It would be seen as an embarrassment to them and they would have to correct that wrong if Newcastle went down.
“Part of the idea is they want to make Newcastle United one of the biggest, if not the biggest club in the world. Now it sounds fanciful at the moment but that’s the idea here. They haven’t signed Newcastle to be mid-table, to be bottom half or to go to the Championship and say ‘this hasn’t worked out’.
“They’re here for the long run. It would be a blow and it would set back the Newcastle project 18-months, two years, possibly longer if they can’t come at the first attempt. But I would expect that if they were to go down there would be a lot of money invested to make sure they came back as quickly as possible.”
Relegation not the end of the world for Newcastle
There are still 26 games to go. Newcastle’s fate is in their own hands. But it’s been a miserable beginning to the campaign. To be almost a third of the way through the season and still without a win is hugely worrying.
But that won’t impact the owners’ plans. They will still want to take Newcastle to the top. They may just have to do it via the scenic route.
Relegation would be embarrassing amid Newcastle’s riches, but the timing of the takeover has left the club in a tough position. Ideally, the deal would have happened over the summer.
Instead, the takeover was approved in October. Now the owners will only have January to act and give the squad the boost it needs in terms of reinforcements.
With Howe at the helm and PIF behind him, Newcastle can still avoid relegation.