Newcastle takeover: Mike Ashley CONFIRMS sale plans BEFORE transfer window

Newcastle takeover: Mike Ashley CONFIRMS sale plans BEFORE transfer window

Newcastle takeover: Mike Ashley CONFIRMS sale plans BEFORE transfer window

Ashley, who is asking for more than £300m to sell up, confirmed after appearing in front of MPs at a parliamentary select committee looking into his retail business that he is in talks and would like to get the deal done before the January transfer window opens.

Mike Ashley has ensured Rafa Benitez will have his hands tied once again in the January transfer window after putting the club up for sale once again.

Ashley, who is also majority shareholder at sportswear retailer Sports Direct, said in October he had not received any acceptable offers for Newcastle a year after he officially put the club up for sale.

Ashley ended takeover talks with English businesswomen Amanda Staveley for the Magpies in January 2017 after she placed a £300 million ($397 million, 338 million euros) bid for the club.

Ashley has revealed he is close to finding a buyer for Newcastle United - and could be gone before January.

Asked about the likelihood of the month-long timeframe being met, he described it as "possible", stopping short of calling it realistic - saying it was "too strong a word".

Yet, according to the Newcastle owner, this time around he is more confident of striking a deal to sell the club.

"[Is that] Realistic? It's possible".

The St. James's Park side looked prime candidates for relegation from the Premier League this season after a woeful start to the season.

Even still, Saturday's 3-0 defeat at home to West Ham was a timely reminder of the help Benitez needs, and was accompanied by a "late walk-in" protest from thousands of supporters, revolting against Ashley's ownership. "Hopefully we can carry on our recent good form and get the deal done".

They are now 15th in the table with 12 points from their opening 14 fixtures, and face Wolves at St James' on Sunday with protestors calling for a boycott of the televised match.

There are rumours circulating that Ashely, via his lawyers, has spoken with buyers but is yet to see evidence of proof of funds, whilst some senior Newcastle staff members are believed to be "skeptical" about how honest Ashley was during his Sky interview.

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