Eddie Howe’s firm message to questions on Newcastle United’s Saudi owners

Chairman of Newcastle United, Yasir Al-Rumayyan arrives at the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on October 17, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.Chairman of Newcastle United, Yasir Al-Rumayyan arrives at the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on October 17, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.
Chairman of Newcastle United, Yasir Al-Rumayyan arrives at the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on October 17, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. | Getty Images
Eddie Howe was asked questions about controversy surrounding Newcastle United’s new Saudi owners - and here’s what he said.

Eddie Howe refused to be drawn into the ethics of Newcastle United being majority owned by a Saudi Arabian company.

Critics of the Newcastle United takeover, by PCP Capital Partners, RB Sports & Media and the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, point to the poor human rights record of the Saudis, and the links between the state and PIF themselves.

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However, Howe was keen not to get into an ethical or political debate about Saudi ownership, instead preferring to talk football, and football only.

“For me this was a football decision. I'm delighted to be manager of this football club,” he said when asked to clarify his stance on his new employers.

“It is about football for me.”

‘My focus is football’

Former Bournemouth manager Howe was again pressed by the gathered media at his unveiling at St James’ Park this week.

But again, Howe ‘straight-batted’ all Saudi queries.

“As I said earlier, my focus is football and running the team. That's all I am going to talk about,” he said.

“It is about football to me - and that's all I am going to concern myself with.”

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