Monday, September 29, 2008

Nigerian group submit Newcastle bid

BBC Sport are reporting that the Nigerian consortium linked with buying-out Newcastle have now submitted a bid. If true, it shows how fast things can move in the world of Premier League football!

According to the report, the bid was placed on Friday (Sep 26) evening and is the only one currently on the table - although several other parties are thought to be interested in buying the club from the disenchanted, and under-fire, Mike Ashley.

It's not clear quite how much cash the Nigerian's have, though it's clearly nowhere near the amount available to Manchester City (though they are arguably the richest club on the planet, so that's not surprising!). Earlier reports have suggested a bid in the region of £350million.

Chris Nathaniel, the UK businessman fronting the bid, stressed a lot of work needs to be done on the club's infrastructure and the secret bidders do not want to blow all their money on the purchase and have nothing left to finance other areas, such as transfers.

When asked how much the bid was for, Nathaniel told the BBC: "We can't at this stage, that's confidential between ourselves and Newcastle, but a bid was put in on Friday evening. There's been no timeline given by Newcastle but we hope it will be sometime soon.

"What they don't want to do is spend a load of money to buy the club and have no money to buy players and to work on what is a quite a troubled infrastructure."

Newcastle declined to comment and the identity of the Nigerian bidders remains top-secret. This may just be the opening shot in a bidding war, but at least (for non-Newcastle fans, that is) this group do not seem to have enough cash to buy anything more than a couple of league places.

However, as I mentioned earlier, Newcastle remain an attractive target for potential investors and, given the current football climate, it would be no surprise whatsoever if another, far, far richer group now step forward and show their hand.