By Darren Bent

28th Jan, 2020 | 1:12pm

Exclusive: Darren Bent makes Mike Ashley claim amid Newcastle takeover talk

Darren Bent claims that Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley will not sell the club for anything less than what he wants to amid talk of a potential takeover.

The former Tottenham and England striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that others may have accepted a lower offer to get out of St James’ Park but that the Sports Direct supremo is a sterner businessman than that.

It was reported over the weekend that the Saudi Arabian sovereign fund were in talks with Ashley over buying the north east side from him after over 10 years in charge on Tyneside.

However, having seen previously reported takeover attempts come to nothing, Bent says that Ashley clearly is sticking to his guns and that he is well within his rights to do so.

“They’ve got linked and you think: ‘Get excited,’ but you just never know because they’ve been linked before and still yet nothing,” Bent told Football Insider.

“You’ve got to think yourself you hope Mike Ashley does the right thing and sells but at the end of the day he owns the football club and if it’s not right for him he’s not going to do it, we’ve seen that.

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“A lot other owners, who maybe were not as strong as he is, would have probably taken a little less than what they wanted but he’s been adamant and said: ‘I’m not going anywhere until I get what I want.’ Fair play to him.”

Ashley has been in charge at St James’ Park since 2007 and has endured a turbulent time with the Toon Army.

The club have suffered relegation twice under his stewardship and he has come under fire for a number of decisions he has made, including the renaming of the stadium and appointing the likes of Joe Kinnear and Steve McClaren as managers.

In other Newcastle United news, Football Insider pundit has been left drooling as the club plot a deal to secure a “fantastic deal” for a Premier League star.