Date: 16th May 2018 at 8:01pm
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While securing the long-term future of manager Rafael Benitez and getting some top quality signings through the door, Newcastle United fans would also name the exit of owner Mike Ashley as a priority ahead of the summer.

The Sports Direct supremo, who has been at the helm for just over a decade at St James’ Park, had put the club up for sale back in the winter and there were hopes that the Magpies could see a takeover before the January transfer window.

While that did not transpire, there were elongated talks with PCP Capital Partners – fronted by Amanda Staveley – although they came to an unceremonious end with both parties launching a volley of accusations at the other.

With Premier League safety the concern in the second half of the season, there was relative silence when it came to talk of a possible takeover, and it is only now the club have confirmed their place in the top flight for next season that there has been any update.

Unfortunately for the Toon Army, it is the last thing they wanted to hear.

The Sun claim that Staveley and Ashley have been holding discrete talks for some time but that the latter’s firm £400million asking price is set to end any chance of the businesswoman sealing a deal, in what is an early bombshell for the summer.

However, the supporters must remember how quiet the last couple of months have been and hold out some sort of hope over a deal – for only those in the know are privy to what is happening behind the scenes.

Ashley likes to stay out of the headlines and that will likely remain the case if takeover talks are taking place.

They say that silence is golden, and while Newcastle fans might not think so, until anything official is announced then hope must remain.

In other Newcastle United news, fans have been left fuming over one man’s controversial comments.

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