Newcastle United’s £300million Saudi-led takeover was officially completed on Thursday, which brought an end to Mike Ashley’s 14-year spell at the club. As a result, fans are dreaming of big-money signings at St James' Park, though it seems Kylian Mbappe isn't too eager on making the move.
Newcastle are set to have a lot of money to play with after the Premier League passed the deal. The decision was made after the league received “legally binding assurances” that the Saudi state would not control the club.
The Public Investment Fund (PIF), which is separate to the state and worth a reported £320bn, will provide 80% of the funds.
The takeover had almost collapsed in 2020 when the group were unable to prove they were separate to the Saudi state.
The deal recently suffered another blow after a piracy dispute broke out between Saudi Arabia and its Premier League broadcaster beIN Sports, but the case was settled earlier this week.
But despite the takeover making Newcastle one of the richest club’s in world football - meaning they are now capable of affording some of the best players in world football - one has jokingly already ruled themselves out of a potential move.
On a plane journey with the France national team during the 2018 World Cup, Antoine Griezmann informed Mbappe that he had signed him on his Newcastle career on Football Manager, in a video released by Sky Sports on Facebook.
“Let me show you my record for 2027,” said Griezmann. “With Newcastle, Premier League champions, FA Cup, Champions League, Community Shied and Super Cup!
“Five titles. What a coach! What a coach! I am a legend of coaches in English football. Ousmane [Dembele], tell them!”
“Not bad, not bad,” Dembele replied. “It’s a good record, quintruple!”
Griezmann then turned to Mbappe and said: “I signed you with Newcastle, I paid €134million for you.
“Where?” said Mbappe, before Griezmann told him again that it was Newcastle.
“Newcastle? It’s not hot over there, huh?,” Mbappe said in reference to the weather.
The Frenchman is seemingly put off by the cold weather in the north east of England, but what was just a takeover on a virtual game has now become a reality with the latest news.
Meanwhile, co-owner Amanda Staveley outlined the club’s ambition on Thursday and said they will transform Newcastle into a global footballing superpower.
“Of course we have the same ambitions as Manchester City and PSG in terms of trophies, absolutely, but that will take time,” Staveley told MailOnline.
“Do we want to win the Premier League within five to 10 years? Yes. This takeover is hugely transformative. We want to see trophies. But trophies need investment, time, patience and team work."
Newcastle have not won any silverware in more than 50 years but the long wait is likely to end soon.