After 14 years as Newcastle owner, Mike Ashley finally bid farewell to the club on Thursday but the new ownership has come under intense scrutiny.
A Saudi-led consortium parted with £300 million for an 80 percent stake in the club, a deal that has been met by fierce criticism from human rights groups.
The move had been blocked in 2020 but was given the green light after broadcast disputes were settled and Premier League chiefs claimed to have received guarantees that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not be running the club.
According to the Guardian, the 19 other clubs in the league are “understood to be united in opposition” to the buyout and are “demanding to know what changed” and why there was little notice of it being waved through.
With the takeover already complete, the call for an emergency meeting is not a bid to derail the process rather a reflection of the move itself, providing a platform to express their views and question the Premier League signing it off.
The report states “clubs have expressed concern that the Premier League’s brand could be damaged” due to Saudi Arabia’s PIF taking a controlling stake, temporarily forgetting other ownership structures in the league.
The deal is one that will provide Newcastle with considerable spending power, more than Man City, but there are mass concerns over an unaccountable foreign investor and that ethical considerations are to be quickly forgotten.
There’s little that can be done now but it’s certainly a complex web to unravel and morality is at the centre of it.