'Huge embarrassment, they will walk away' - Exclusive: Pundit drops Newcastle takeover view

Danny Mills has claimed Newcastle United risk annoying their prospective Middle Eastern buyers by considering any rival offers for the club. 

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former England international argued that the Saudi PIF could be tempted to “walk away” from a potential deal if they feel as if the Magpies are exploring other options.

In recent days a bid – understood to be worth around £350 million – has been lodged by US TV mogul Henry Mauriss.

That offer would eclipse Mike Ashley’s valuation of the club by around £50 million, with Mauriss said to be keen on completing a deal before the start of the 2020/21 campaign.

But Mills has issued a warning to the board at St. James’ Park.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “The Saudis thought they had it. They thought they were in the box seat.

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“They’ve done pretty much everything they needed to do to get this deal done, and suddenly now someone comes in at the last minute and offers more. If you go with that other offer and allow them to explore it, do you annoy the Saudis?

“Having worked in the Middle East, losing face is considered a huge embarrassment. If you look like you’re going to do business then look at another offer, they’ll walk away, and they will walk away very very quickly.

“Then you’re left with an offer that isn’t as far down the line, is it going to happen, is it not? You put yourself in a very difficult situation.”

In April, PCP Capital Partners – Amanda Staveley’s Saudi-backed consortium – agreed a deal with Mike Ashley that would bring the controversial businessman’s 13-year tenure on Tyneside to a close.

Since then, however, progress on any prospective ratification from the Premier League has been held up as both parties await the outcome of the governing body’s owners and directors’ test.

In other Newcastle United news, Exclusive: Toon new deal on table for £20K-a-wk player, Robinson reacts.