Nigerian consortium to bid for Newcastle, says report

A consortium of wealthy Nigerians are planning to take over Newcastle United, according to a report in Africa.

A consortium of wealthy Nigerians are planning to take over Newcastle United, according to a report in Africa.

Current owner Mike Ashley is trying to find a buyer for the ailing Premier League club, after proving unsuccessful with his initial efforts to secure a sale.

Ashley has announced he wants to sell his interest in Newcastle just 16 months after staging a £134.4m (€169.6m) takeover.

Dubai International Capital (DIC) have ruled themselves out of the running, making it clear they are not "planning a bid for any football club".

However, a Nigerian company claim they have £350m (€441.7m) behind them - and are bidding to secure the remaining funding which would improve their chances of a successful takeover.

Chief Executive Officer of the NVA Management, Chris Nathaniel, whose company are handling the deal, wants to make Nigeria the first African country to own a Premier League club.

He told www.KickOffNigeria.com: "All along I have been working hard to get wealthy and football loving Nigerian entrepreneurs to buy the club since Mike Ashley indicated his willingness to sell the club to the person, people or entrepreneurs who can meet the £400m (€504.8m) selling price of the club.

"Right now I am happy to tell you that well meaning Nigerians have responded and the consortium of Nigerian entrepreneurs has so far contributed £350m (€441.7m) to buy the club.

"Ashley has stood his ground that he won't sell the club until the money is raised to the asking price of £400m (€504.8m).

"So what that means is that we need to raise another £50m (€63m) or £100m (€126.1m) to shut the door behind the other top Arab companies who are also interested in the club.

"The Arab companies have also indicated interest and made offers - but they haven't met the asking price too."

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