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Archive for category: Keith Harris.

Toon takeover latest – Harris speaks.

September 2nd, 2009 | 32 Comments |

Harris talks but says little
Harris talks but says little
According to previous press reports, Newcastle United’s £39m overdraft facility with Barclays Bank ended on the 31st August and unless some other agreement was reached it was going to be renewed with only a £10m limit, in line with Barclays’ policy for Championship clubs.

If reports that the club owed £20m on that overdraft facility are true, then Ashley would have needed to pay off the other £10m by August 31st.

Barry Moat was apparently in the process of trying to negotiate some sort of deal with Barclays, which would allow the club to maintain a working overdraft facility higher than £10m and thus put him in a better position to take over the club.

I therefore wonder what happened with that, not that I’m expecting to hear anything from the club about it. (more…)


Yanks close in on Toon.

August 30th, 2009 | 21 Comments |

Star-spangled Toon.
Star-spangled Toon.
According to The Mirror, Alan Shearer is the fairest of them all.

Or at least that will be the case if the Sheard-fronted American bid is successful.

The Mirror claims the consortium is close to signing a deal, although forgive me for not getting all excited but we’ve heard this sort of stuff before and it has so far come to nothing.

Apparently these Yanks have a background in the American sports industry and have the funds to pay Ashley’s £100m asking price, build and market the club and sign players.

A source close to the bid (yawn) said:

This bid is both serious and credible. The difference between this and other bids is that the funding is there to buy the club if agreement can be reached on other financial areas such as the club’s £39million overdraft.

Ideally, the consortium would have liked the business completed before the transfer deadline closed but they are serious about buying the club and won’t rush.

Talks are under way and Mike Ashley’s original asking price shouldn’t be an issue. But it will take time and because of all the other disappointments the Americans have to play their cards close to their chests.” (more…)


Sheffield Owls fans hoot with derision as Geoff Sheard enters Toon farce.

August 25th, 2009 | 31 Comments |

Uncle Fester meets Collina?
Uncle Fester meets Collina?
North West sports businessman, Geoff Sheard has sensationally entered the race (if you could call it that) to buy Toon. Sheard was also involved in a unsuccessful bid to buy fellow struggling giant, Sheffield Wednesday in 2008.

Newcastle United’s Managing director, Derek Llambias gave some substance to the reports when he confirmed that Sheard is in contact with Seymour Pearce’s Keith Harris, who is brokering the sale. Llambias said:

“Geoff is dealing with Keith Harris and we are still waiting for proof of funds.”

However, the Sheffield bid was a long drawn out affair with no satisfactory conclusion, and it emerged that Sheard for merely a figurehead for other, secret interests, and was putting no money of his own into the bid. Darryl Keys, then chairman of ‘Wednesdayite’, a Sheff Wed fans group with a 10% share of the club said at the time (in terms eerily familiar to Newcastle supporters at present):

“The club can’t stay in limbo forever. We’ve had lots of assurances but no clarity or verifiable evidence that he can conclude the deal. (more…)


Newcastle United – News Roundup – 07 August 2009 [updated]

August 7th, 2009 | 19 Comments |

Smudge - Stand-in captain
Smudge - Stand-in captain
As reported on this site yesterday Bassong has gone to Spurs and Beye looks likely to be leaving for Hull. Sky Sports is also reporting that 19 year old winger Jonny Godsmark has been loaned to Hereford for 6 months.

The club has confirmed that Alan Smith will be captain against West Brom as Nicky Butt is still injured and that Danny Guthrie will miss the game due to a hamstring injury picked up in training.

In terms of the management situation, the club have apparently ruled out the idea that Kinnear will return – although there’s nothing on NUFC’s official site to that effect – and The Mail are claiming that David O’Leary has also turned down the opportunity to become manager. This latter claim by The Mail contains no direct quotes from O’Leary though, so it could just be nonsense.

An awful lot is printed about Newcastle these days but, besides the confirmed transfers, most of it just appears to be speculation, so there is little of substance to actually report today.

The Barry Moat situation dominated most of the speculation yesterday but The Chronicle wonders if that’s all a ruse to flush out other bidders, which wouldn’t surprise me at all. (more…)


Newcastle United – News Roundup – 06 August 2009 [updated]

August 6th, 2009 | 21 Comments |

Barry Moat
Barry Moat
The Guardian reports that the sale of Newcastle United is imminent.

Apparently Ashley is being urged to accept a bid from a consortium led by Tyneside businessman Barry Moat. It is thought that Moat, who has financial backing from investors in the United States, is Keith Harris’s preferred bidder. The Guardian speculates that if Moat gets the club he will favour Alan Shearer as manager.

Additional reports on this issue can be found in The TimesThe Chronicle, The Journal and The Sun, but I would suggest remaining cautious about this news until a formal announcement is made from the club. There is no guarantee that Ashley will accept any bid recommended by Harris (assuming the stories are true in the first place).

There were reports yesterday that the club had, incredibly, offered Joe Kinnear a two-year contract. This was covered last night in an article on this site, so I don’t really need to mention it too much here except to say that there’s an article in The Times that claims the club is denying offering Kinnear a contract and insists ‘he has his wires crossed’. (more…)