Newcastle owner says EPL club could be sold before January


Retail tycoon Mike Ashley has told Sky News he is in talks to sell Newcastle United in a deal he hopes will go through before the January transfer window.

"Not (in) exclusive (talks) but talks are at a more progressive stage than they have ever been", he said.

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.

It has previously attracted the interest of Amanda Staveley's PCP Capital Partners, which tabled a £300m bid late a year ago.

Ashley bought former owner Sir John Hall's 41.6 per cent stake in the club back in 2007.

During that period, the club have been relegated from the Premier League twice and fans have voiced their anger at Ashley's unwillingness to spend in the transfer market.

But earlier today, American outlet AJC revealed the billionaire was NOT the man ready to end Ashley's 11-year reign as owner of Newcastle.

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"Hmmm. Realistic? It's possible, realistic is maybe too strong a word".

His TV appearance on Monday night (see below) ensuring he was the biggest topic of conversation for both Newcastle fans and neutrals alike, rather than the next match at Everton on Wednesday.

Ashley, who did not name the interested party, added: "Hopefully we can carry on the good form - just recent good form - and we can get the deal done".

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.

They are 15th in the standings with 12 points from 14 games.

He added that any potential buyer must be able to provide transfer funds.