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A Villa 15:00 Newcastle

Nigerians hopeful of Magpies deal

African consortium keen on Newcastle

Last Updated: 25/09/08 8:47am

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Newcastle: Up for sale

Newcastle: Up for sale

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The Nigerian consortium looking to buy Newcastle are hopeful they can make an announcement over their proposed deal before Saturday.

Magpies owner Mike Ashley is desperately looking to sell the troubled North East giants after he was condemned by the club's fans for his handling of the Kevin Keegan saga, which eventually saw the Toon legend depart the club earlier this month.

Protests followed and Ashley decided he wanted out, but attempts to find a buyer have so far failed.

London-based investment bank Seymour Pierce have since been appointed to handle the sale.

Links to investors in China and America have surfaced in recent days but the African-based consortium are now hopeful they can seal a deal.

A spokesman for the group, leading English-based agent Chris Nathaniel, confirmed that they hoped they could soon make an announcement about a possible deal.

Very serious

"All I can say is that we have made contact with Newcastle," Nathaniel told Sky Sports News.

"The Nigerians are very serious and very resourceful and we will make an announcement in the next 48 hours.

"I won't comment on the circumstances at Newcastle, but they are a fantastic club and should be reaching further heights than what they are."

Nathaniel confirmed that the consortium could very well bring Keegan back to the club, something which the fans are keen on.

"He would be fantastic, a great manager and a great guy," he added.

Nathaniel was speaking as Newcastle lost their fourth consecutive game on Wednesday as they went out of the Carling Cup at home to Tottenham.

Newcastle, who face Blackburn on Saturday, are also holding talks with Terry Venables about becoming their caretaker manager.

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