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25th Jan 2022

Newcastle owners target more clubs in Man City-style club network

Callum Boyle

Newcastle’s Saudi owners have been inspired by the Man City model

Newcastle United’s Saudi Arabian owners are exploring the possibility of mirroring the Manchester City model by having a portfolio of sports and football clubs.

Inspired by City’s Abu Dhabi owners – who currently own 14 clubs in 10 separate countries – the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) want to expand their portfolio beyond their £244m acquisition of the Magpies back in October.

The group currently own assets worth £355bn and have plans to increase that by a further £200bn in the next three years.

The Times have reported that the PIF are set to appoint Majed Al Sorour to the board at St James’ Park as a director to the club in order to help progress the ambitious project.

Al Sorour has been responsible for bringing some of the biggest names in golf to the Middle Eastern state in his role as chief executive of the Saudi Golf Federation.

Newcastle are set to confirm the move in the coming days and are awaiting the Premier League’s approval under the owners’ and directors’ test.

In addition to looking into buying more football clubs, the PIF are also exploring the idea of moving into other sports and are sponsoring the Saudi International golf event which takes place next month.

Meanwhile Amnesty International have come out and condemned Newcastle after they recently arrived in the Gulf kingdom for a warm-weather training camp, saying that Saudi Arabia are using this as an attempt of “sports washing” and that they will use it as a “another PR opportunity for the Saudi authorities.”

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