The stalled Saudi takeover of Newcastle United could be back on.
This is because after four years of disputes between Saudis and Qataris, the TV channel BeIN Sports will finally be unblocked in Saudi Arabia.
This removes a significant hurdle in the way of new investment at St James' Park as BeIN Sports (who own the broadcasting rights for the Premier League in the Middle East and North Africa) were one of the loudest voices against the Saudi-backed takeover of The Toon in 2019.
The organisation's chief executive Yousef al-Obaidly even wrote a letter warning the Premier League not to trust those behind the bid. As quoted by The Chronicle, al-Obaidly said 'the potential acquirer of Newcastle United [has] caused huge damage to your club's and the Premier League's commercial revenues.'
By getting BeIN Sports back onside, the chances of Mike Ashley finally selling the club would be significantly higher.
That said, there remains an awful lot of work to be done to get this takeover over the line. Ashley and his legal team of Nick De Marco and Shaheed Fatima must prove that the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund is not state-controlled, as this would violate several of the Premier League's guidelines in regards to ownership and investment.
This is not a straight forward issue, as the Public Investment Fund's chairman Mohammed Bin Salman is also the country's Deputy Prime Minister.
However, with BeIN Sports' support, the Ashley era is certainly a step closer to its end.
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