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Premier League deny Newcastle'...
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Premier League deny Newcastle's Saudi takeover failed owners test

The Premier League has refuted Newcastle United's claim that a Saudi-led takeover of the club failed the Owners and Directors Test. 

On Wednesday night, Newcastle released a statement which said the £300million (€330m) bid from Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PiF), Reuben Brothers and PCP Capital partners was rejected by the Premier League.

In response, the Premier League says it's "disappointed and surprised" by Newcastle's statment.

On July 30, it was announced that the bid had been withdrawn 17-weeks after it was first accepted.

At the time, the consortium blamed what they called an "unforeseeably prolonged process" for their withdrawal.

PCP representative Amanda Staveley went on to claim that some clubs had blocked the deal, something denied by Premier League chief executive Richard Masters.

In a letter to Newcastle upon Tyne Central MP, Chi Onwurah last month, Masters said that "there was never any point where the Premier League Board was asked to make an assessment on the suitability of all members of the consortium".

While Newcastle have chided Masters and the Premier League for acting inappropriately, threatening legal action as well, the Premier League flatly reject the club's view on the process.

"The Premier League Board has, on a number of occasions," they say, "given its opinion about which entities it believes would have control over the club should the consortium proceed with the acquisition."

Newcastle insist that the PiF-led consortium would have been "autonomous of the Saudi Arabian government".

However, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman heads the Board of the PiF, while their web domain is a Saudi government one.

The Premier League say their board "has repeatedly offered independent arbitration as a way forward since June."

Premier League statement:

The Premier League was disappointed and surprised by the Newcastle United Football Club statement regarding its potential takeover by PCP Capital Partners, the Reuben Brothers and the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).

The club's assertion that the Premier League has rejected the takeover is incorrect.

The Premier League Board has, on a number of occasions, given its opinion about which entities it believes would have control over the club should the consortium proceed with the acquisition. That opinion is based on legal advice.

This means the potential takeover could proceed to the next stage should the relevant entities provide all appropriate information. They would then be subject to a suitability assessment by the Board. As an alternative, the Board has repeatedly offered independent arbitration as a way forward since June.

It is also incorrect to suggest these decisions were taken by any individual; they were agreed unanimously by all Premier League Board members.

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Amanda Staveley Mike Ashley Mohammad Bin Salman Newcastle Newcastle United PCP Capital Partners Premier League Reuben Brothers Saudi Public Investment Fund St. James's Park Takeover

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