The Saudi Arabian Football Federation has banned Newcastle United from playing in the country for a year, following an investigation into the club’s alleged involvement in corruption.
The Newcastle United Saudi Arabian is a club based in Newcastle, England. They are currently managed by Rafael Benitez and play in the Premier League.
Staveley, a Newcastle part-owner, discusses the club’s future prospects.
Newcastle United has been purchased for £305 million by a Saudi Arabian consortium.
After obtaining “legally enforceable guarantees” that the Saudi state would not control the team, the Premier League authorized the acquisition.
Instead, the state is regarded as distinct from the Public Investment Fund (PIF), which will contribute 80% of the money for the transaction.
Despite the fact that Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, is named as the PIF’s chair, this is not the case.
After passing the Premier League owners’ and directors’ test, the transaction was completed.
Mike Ashley’s 14-year reign as Newcastle United owner comes to an end with the takeover.
On Thursday, supporters gathered outside Newcastle’s St James’ Park stadium to celebrate the takeover’s approval.
Newcastle is one of the wealthiest clubs in the world because to PIF’s £250 billion in assets.
The consortium’s financial director, Amanda Staveley, said the new owners are making a “long-term commitment” to guarantee Newcastle is “frequently contending for big trophies.”
The FA Cup was Newcastle’s last major domestic prize, which they won in 1955.
“The Premier League, Newcastle United Football Club, and St James Holdings Limited have today resolved the dispute over the club’s acquisition by the consortium of PIF, PCP Capital Partners, and RB Sports & Media,” the Premier League stated in a statement.
“The legal wrangling centered on whose entities would own and/or have control of the club after the acquisition. The resolution has been agreed upon by all parties as essential to end the lengthy period of uncertainty for supporters about the club’s ownership.
“The Premier League now has legally enforceable guarantees that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not have any influence over Newcastle United Football Club.”
“All parties are relieved to have reached a conclusion to this process, which provides stability and clarity to Newcastle United Football Club and its supporters.”
During Mike Ashley’s 14-year ownership of Newcastle, the club only qualified for Europe once.
A contract was struck in April 2020, but the purchasers backed out four months later when the Premier League proposed arbitration to resolve a dispute over ownership of the team.
Saudi Arabia is said to have reached an agreement after settling a piracy issue with Qatar-based broadcaster beIN Sports, which has the rights to telecast Premier League matches in the Middle East.
However, sources tell Sport that a deal between the Premier League and the consortium was struck before word of the piracy issue broke on Wednesday.
Human rights violations have been alleged of the Saudi Arabian government, but with the main owner PIF now considered a distinct company, that, along with any piracy concerns, were no longer an obstacle to the acquisition, according to the Premier League.
The crown prince is suspected of ordering the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018, which he denies.
Amanda Staveley, the chief executive of PCP Capital, will join Newcastle’s board of directors, while Yasir Al-Rumayyan, the governor of PIF, will serve as the club’s non-executive chairman.
PCP Capital takes concerns about Saudi Arabia’s human rights record “extremely seriously,” Staveley told sports writer Dan Roan, but their partner “is not that Saudi state, it’s PIF.”
“This is very much about the PIF’s investment into a great football team and we look forward to expanding the club,” she added when questioned whether Saudi Arabia was guilty of “sportswashing.”
Human rights organizations are speaking out against the bill.
Despite certain reforms under Mohammed bin Salman, such as lifting the prohibition on women driving, Saudi Arabia has been accused of human rights violations and women’s rights activists have been imprisoned.
Homosexuality is illegal in Saudi Arabia, according to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association, and the death sentence is the legal sanction for same-sex sexual activities.
The acquisition, according to Amnesty International UK, is “an very painful blow for human rights advocates.”
“We realize that many Newcastle United supporters will see today as a fantastic day,” stated chief executive Sacha Deshmukh.
“But it’s also a very worrisome day for anybody concerned about English football club ownership and if these wonderful clubs are being used to whitewash human rights abuses.”
Deshmukh echoed Amnesty International’s demand for the Premier League’s owners and directors to “modify their test to address human rights concerns.”
Hatice Cengiz, Khashoggi’s fiancée, had earlier asked the Premier League not to let the transfer to go through, noting the crown prince’s role.
The Ashley era has come to an end.
Mike Ashley’s 14-year reign as owner of Newcastle United has been tumultuous.
Newcastle was purchased at £134 million by Sports Direct CEO Ashley in May 2007.
He placed the club up for sale for the first time in September 2008, after a series of fan demonstrations following the departure of popular manager Kevin Keegan.
Newcastle was demoted from the Premier League that season and again in 2015-16, but won the Championship both times to return to the top level at the first chance.
The Magpies’ best Premier League result under Ashley was fifth in 2011-12, while Alan Pardew was in charge.
In October 2017, Ashley placed Newcastle on the market once again.
After seven games, the team is in 19th place and without a victory, putting manager Steve Bruce under fire. According to a Newcastle United Supporters’ Trust (NUST) poll released this week, 94 percent of supporters want Bruce to go.
According to the same poll, 93.8 percent of the club’s members support the takeover, and NUST stated in a statement that the sale gave the club “the first genuine prospect” of success in “many years.”
NUST also said that it was looking forward to working with the owners to “rejuvenate one of England’s finest football clubs.”
Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal has joined a consortium that is buying Newcastle United. Reference: saudi consortium net worth.
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