Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley feels that a proposed takeover deal with PCP Capital Partners has fallen through despite being very close to reaching an agreement.
Ashley was believed to be close to selling Newcastle to Amanda Staveley in a deal worth around £300million in mid-December after weeks of talks.
Staveley’s group, which is thought to be backed by money from the Middle East and China, is one of a series of prospective buyers which signed non-disclosure agreements with the club last year.
It made a formal offer for the club in November which is understood could have eventually amounted to £300million, but only if a series of clauses – including one guarding against the repercussions of relegation – were met, and there were suggestions since that an alternative lower cash bid was also tabled.
That came nowhere near meeting the sportswear magnate’s requirements, although crucially the lines of communication remained open.
However, the deal is now understood to be off.
A source close to Ashley said: “It’s only right to let the fans know that there is no deal on the table or even under discussion with Amanda Staveley and PCP.
“Attempts to reach a deal with Amanda Staveley and PCP have proved to be exhausting, frustrating and a complete waste of time.”