Newcastle United co-owners Amanda Staveley and Mehrdad Ghodoussi to leave the club

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Newcastle United co-owners Amanda Staveley and Mehrdad Ghodoussi are to leave the club after three years at St James’ Park.

Staveley, 51, played a key role in orchestrating the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund’s (PIF) purchase of an 80 per cent stake in Newcastle for £300million (now $379m) in 2021, helping bring to an end Mike Ashley’s 14-year ownership of the club.

As part of that deal, she acquired a 10 per cent stake in Newcastle, having made three failed attempts to buy the club from Ashley in 2017. The Reuben family also bought a 10 per cent share. The Premier League faced criticism for approving the Saudi-backed takeover, including from Amnesty International who called it “an extremely bitter blow for human rights defenders”.

Staveley and her co-owners completed their takeover with Newcastle 19th in the Premier League table and with the financier predicting they could win the title within five to ten years. They sacked Steve Bruce as manager five weeks later and subsequently appointed Eddie Howe, who guided the club to safety in 2021-22.

After years of underinvestment, Newcastle spent around £92 million in the first transfer window post-takeover, more than any other club in Europe, with Staveley and Ghodoussi instrumental in bringing in high-profile players like Kieran Trippier and Bruno Guimaraes.

In their first full season as owners, Newcastle finished fourth in the Premier League in 2022-23 to secure Champions League football for the first time since 2003. They also reached the League Cup final, eventually losing out to Manchester United.

Last season, which was hampered by injuries and Sandro Tonali’s 10-month suspension for betting offences, they finished seventh, narrowly missing out on a return to European competition.

Their tenure has featured numerous highlights, from smashing their transfer record to sign Alexander Isak from Real Sociedad for £60 million two years ago and a £10 million spend on improving Newcastle’s training ground, to a remarkable 4-1 victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.

Newcastle’s women’s team was a passion project for Staveley and was brought under the club’s umbrella for the first time in its history. They went full-time professional last season and secured back-to-back promotions into the FA Women’s Championship.

After being stripped back under Ashley, Newcastle now have a more rounded corporate structure, with Darren Eales in place as chief executive and Paul Mitchell recently replacing Dan Ashworth as sporting director. All parties have reluctantly concluded that the time is right for Staveley and Ghodoussi to step back and sell their shareholding and for the club to move on.

A Companies House update earlier this year showed that Staveley’s stake has been diluted to six per cent, with the Reuben family’s shares increasing.

In March, questions were raised about Staveley’s future at the club after filings on Companies House showed she had resigned as a director from 20 Newcastle-related companies. However, she quickly moved to assuage any doubts about her role at the club.

“The changes made… were purely administrative, to non-trading subsidiaries,” she wrote on Instagram. “After the takeover, Jamie (Reuben) and I stepped in as directors of all companies until we could build an executive team. We remain on the ‘top-co’ and the board.”

Staveley featured heavily in the We Are Newcastle United Amazon documentary last August and recently helped secure a deal between golf’s PGA Tour and the Saudi Arabia-funded LIV tour. She is expected to continue to work with PIF and remain involved in football.

She also previously helped broker the £210m sale of Manchester City in 2008 to Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Mansour.

GO DEEPER

Amanda Staveley, Newcastle’s first lady who nobody can agree on

(Stu Forster/Getty Images)



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Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams is a writer and editor. Angeles. She writes about politics, art, and culture for LinkDaddy News.

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