Mike Ashley: Newcastle United owner 'hopeful' of selling Premier League club

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley pictured watching a match at St James' Park
Newcastle United have twice been relegated from the Premier League under Mike Ashley's ownership

Newcastle owner Mike Ashley says he is "hopeful" the club will be sold to "an owner that will please everybody".

Ashley, who bought the club in 2007 and has been criticised for a lack of investment in the transfer market, said talks were "at a more advanced stage than they have ever been".

He would like a sale to be completed "before the January transfer window".

Asked how realistic that was, he told Sky News: "It's possible, realistic is maybe too strong a word."

Walsall-born Sports Direct owner Ashley, 54, put Newcastle up for sale in October 2017.

The following month it was hoped a deal could be agreed with businesswoman Amanda Staveley's PCP Capital Partners group.

But after weeks of negotiations the talks concluded in January without an agreement.

"I'm very keen to sell it to the right buyer so everybody is happy, that would be good news," added Ashley, who revealed that the talks were "not exclusive".

Some Newcastle supporters expressed their dissatisfaction with the current regime by staying out of their seats until the 11th minute of Saturday's game against West Ham to mark their anger over Ashley's 11-year tenure.

The Magpies lost the match 3-0 and are only three points above the Premier League relegation zone.

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