Last week Newcastle issued a statement saying that Ashley’s £100m asking price has been met and all deals were now at the ‘sale and purchase stage‘ and apparently senior staff at the club have been told to brace themselves for ‘a big week‘ this week.
It was speculated that the sticking point was the loan facility with Barclays, so presumably – if a sale is imminent – that has now been sorted out and Barry Moat is in a position to take over the club.
If Moat takes over it is of course widely thought that Alan Shearer will be appointed as manager, although whether or not that’s a good idea still divides fans. At a function last week Shearer was indicating that he would not wait for Newcastle forever and was prepared to consider managing another club, but if the takeover is as close as the newspapers are suggesting it looks like Shearer won’t have to do that.
The tribunal into Keegan’s constructive dismissal claim is also due to deliberate this week and the club – should it lose its case – will find out how much compensation it will need to pay.
The Daily Mirror suggests that Keegan has turned down a last-ditch attempt by the club to settle for half the amount Keegan is owed on his 3 and half year contract which, if true, could suggest that Keegan has a good case, although I can find no confirmation of any settlement offer beyond Simon Bird of the Daily Mirror.
All change? Or more unfounded speculation?
Update: Just to say The Times, The Telegraph and other papers are now also claiming Keegan refused an offer to settle.