Speculation stemming from the English media this afternoon suggests that a takeover of Newcastle United is inching closer to completion.

Ashley’s turbulent reign

Current Magpies owner Mike Ashley has run the rule over proceedings at St. James’ Park for the last 13 years.

A somewhat surprising deal in 2007 saw the Sports Direct mogul purchase Sir John Hall’s 41% majority stake in Newcastle, for a fee of around £55 million.

However, to say that Ashley’s time at the helm of the Geordie outfit has since been tumultuous would be putting it lightly.

A lack of investment in the club has seen Newcastle relegated to the Championship twice over the space of Ashley’s reign, with the Magpies’ loyal fanbase having made their understandable frustrations increasingly clear over recent seasons:

WATCH: Newcastle fans protest in the town centre against owner Mike Ashley ahead of today’s game v Spurs. pic.twitter.com/snrmAcWr3D

— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 11, 2018

Newcastle takeover imminent?

As such, news this afternoon that negotiations over Newcastle’s sale are now well underway will no doubt come as music to the ears of the club’s fans.

This comes after Companies House legal documentation, showcasing the framework for an agreement, leaked online earlier today,

And, as since confirmed by the likes of Sky Sports News, talks between Mike Ashley and PCP Capital partners are now at an ‘advanced’ stage, ahead of what looks an imminent Saudi takeover of the Geordie outfit.

Such a deal would be expected to be worth a fee in the region of £340 million, with famed Dubai-based financier Amanda Staveley (who runs PCP Partners) acting as an intermediary.

Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Salman, one of the richest men on the planet, meanwhile, is the man financing the takeover.

PCP Partners are in advanced talks with Mike Ashley to end his 13-year tenure as owner of Newcastle United, according to sources directly involved in the takeover.https://t.co/yraWhLRlzR

— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) April 14, 2020

George Caulkin of the Athletic adds that Ashley’s reign at St. James’ Park ‘has never been closer to ending’, a significant claim when taking into account the host of collapsed Newcastle takeovers of years gone by.

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