Analysis: Mike Ashley failed to get Newcastle back to the dreamy 90s but played safe financially

14 October 2021

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Photo: Alamy Mike Ashley, the now former Newcastle United FC owner.

Last week’s €354 million takeover by Saudi-owned PIF of Newcastle United led to big celebrations across the whole Newcastle community, who feel that British billionaire and now former owner Mike Ashley has held them captive for more than a decade. 

A dive into Newcastle’s financials reveals Ashley has prioritised keeping the club a healthy and sustainable business rather than following the trend of recent years trend for spending sprees on new players and wage levels that are higher than ever. 

But the other side of the story shows that the potential of the club’s extremely loyal fans and supporting community has not been fulfilled, as evidenced by the low level of commercial revenue compared to the development at other Premier League sides.

Jeppe Rump, analyst rump@offthepitch.com

Mike Ashley has been heavily criticised and wanted out by the fans for a long period, but Newcastle United’s financial figures from his tenure paint a picture of a sustainable business.

The total profit after tax for the period 2008-2020 is €44.4 million, which is a significant outperformance compared to the Premier League’s total average loss after tax of €95.7 million in the same period.

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