Newcastle takeover: Steve Bruce reveals how the players feel about £300m Saudi deal

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce says his players have gotten used to potential takeovers of the club to the extent that it has ‘become the norm’.

After 13 years at St James’ Park, Newcastle owner Mike Ashley appeared closer than ever to finally selling the club when he agreed a £300million deal with a Saudi consortium in April.

But over two months on, they are still awaiting news from the Premier League over whether it has been approved.

On Tuesday, Premier League chief Richard Masters said a decision would be announced ‘shortly’, raising hopes that the saga will finally end either way.

Over the years, a number of groups have attempted to buy Newcastle, only to see the deals fail.

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In 2008, Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan was strongly interested but couldn’t agree a deal with Ashley and moved onto Manchester City, where he has helped turn them into one of the biggest clubs in the world.

Three years ago, reports emerged that a Chinese consortium and a number of international parties are thinking about buying the club.

And last year there was a takeover attempt by the Bin Zayed Group which didn’t materialise.

This time the deal with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia appears to have a chance of finally getting the green light.


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And Bruce says the players are well accustomed to speculation surrounding the club.

“The vast majority have been here a good few years and how many times have we been talking about takeovers?” Bruce said.

“I’ve only been here 11 months! I think they’ve become sort of used to it and it’s become the norm.

“As I’ve said many times about this group of players, a lot of them have been here a few years now and the club means something to them.

“I’ve got no problems with that. I think they’ll get on with it and wait for the answer like all of us and let’s hope there’s an answer quickly.

“We can’t influence it or make it an excuse. We are professionals and just have to get on with it.

“We need a decision to be made, let’s hope it’s sooner rather than later.”

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