By 90Min
December 16, 2018

Former Manchester City chief executive Garry Cook is leading a consortium to try and buy Newcastle United from current owner Mike Ashley.

Ashley has been attempting to sell the club for over a year but is yet to strike a deal with any interested party. British businesswoman Amanda Staveley was believed to be the closest to finalising a takeover in late 2017, but the deal failed to materialise.

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News of Cook's interest in Newcastle comes from The Sun, who state that Cook is being funded by an unknown group in the United States.

During Cook's time with City, the club spent heavily on the likes of Emmanuel Adebayor, Carlos Tevez and David Silva, and he is clearly not afraid of taking drastic action in the transfer market, which is something that Newcastle fans feel their club has been lacking in recent seasons.

Since leaving Manchester, Cook has worked for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and recently helped Championship wide Wigan Athletic secure a takeover of their own.

Thanks to his time in football, Cook is said to have developed a close relationship with Ashley, but the duo have also collaborated in the world of sportswear. Cook spent three years working for Nike, whilst Ashley made his name by founding the company which became Sports Direct in 1982.

Former Chelsea and Manchester United executive Peter Kenyon was believed to be leading the race for the club, but The Sun claim Kenyon's bid has fallen around £100m short of Ashley's asking price, which is believed to be over £300m.

Rumours have suggested that potential investors are concerned about Newcastle's chances of survival in the Premier League. The Magpies endured a torrid start to the current campaign and many felt they were a certainty for relegation, leaving investors hesitant to invest such a large sum in a club who seemed doomed to be playing in the Championship next season.

However, their fortunes have drastically improved and, following Saturday's 1-0 victory over Huddersfield Town, Newcastle find themselves 14th in the league and six points clear of the relegation zone, although that gap could be reduced to four points if Southampton win against Arsenal on Sunday.

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