Newcastle owners say takeover talks with Staveley 'waste of time'

FILE PHOTO - Football Soccer - Premier League - Newcastle United vs Tottenham Hotspur - Newcastle, Britain - August 13, 2017 Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley watches the game from the stands REUTERS/Scott Heppell

(Reuters) - Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley’s talks with prospective buyer Amanda Staveley’s firm PCP Capital Partners have broken down with no progress made since an offer in November, a source close to Ashley said on Tuesday.

Ashley put the Premier League club up for sale in October and PCP, the investment firm run by British businesswoman Staveley, made a bid of 250 million pounds.

“Attempts to reach a deal with Amanda Staveley and PCP have proved exhausting, frustrating and a complete waste of time,” a source close to Ashley told Sky Sports News.

“It is only right to let the fans know that there is no deal on the table or even under discussion with Amanda Staveley and PCP.”

However a source close to PCP told Reuters the offer was still on the table and the bid was an upfront payment of 250 million pounds.

The source added that Ashley wanted 350 million pounds for the north-east club but they had not had any communication from the Newcastle owner to suggest talks were over and the first they had heard of the deal being dead was the Sky report.

PCP Capital, which acts for investors in the Middle East and China, is best known for being an intermediary between Barclays and a group of Abu Dhabi investors during the 2008 financial crisis, helping the British bank avoid a government bailout.

Newcastle have been relegated from the top flight twice since Ashley took charge in 2007. The club were promoted back to the Premier League last season and are 15th in the table.

Ashley has faced criticism for not investing more money in buying new players, and his announcement in October that the club was up for sale was welcomed by most of the fans.

Reporting by Ben Martin and Simon Evans; Editing by Ken Ferris