Mauricio Pochettino has emerged as a managerial target for Newcastle United’s prospective new owners. Steve Bruce’s position at St James’ Park is under threat as a result of the impending takeover. Amanda Staveley’s consortium have agreed a £300million deal with Mike Ashley for the Magpies.
Despite an encouraging maiden campaign in charge, Bruce faces an uncertain future with the prospective new owners looking to recruit a high-profile name.
According to the Daily Mirror, three top targets have already emerged
Mauricio Pochettino is being considered and is currently in the United Kingdom. He has been out of work since being given the boot by Tottenham Hotspur last year after a dismal start to the campaign.
The Argentine won plenty of admirers for transforming Spurs from a team that regularly missed out on a top-four finish to Champions League finalists in his final year in charge.
KEY STORY: Newcastle takeover one step away as contracts exchanged and deposit paid for Ashley sale
Newcastle’s prospective owners are considering replacing Steve Bruce
Newcastle are targeting former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino
The takeover is surrounded in controversy because of the involvement of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince. The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia – controlled by Mohammed Bin Salman – will purchase 80 per cent of the shares.
Amnesty International UK have written to Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters to express their concerns about Bin Salman’s human rights record.
The Premier League are currently conducting background checks to see whether those involved in the takeover can be considered fit and proper owners.
Kate Allen, Amnesty International UK Director, wrote: “The coronavirus crisis has already thrown a spotlight on football and its need to treat players and staff fairly, and now there’s a danger that the pandemic could obscure the need for a cool, measured and genuinely ethical decision over this Newcastle deal.
“All businesses need to safeguard against any possible links to human rights violations, and English football is no different.
“We’re absolutely not saying who should end up running Newcastle United, but unless the Premier League pauses and looks seriously at the human rights situation in Saudi Arabia it risks becoming a patsy – a willing dupe of those trying to sportswash their abysmal human rights records.
“This is more than just a financial transaction – it’s an image-building exercise that draws on the prestige of the Premier League and the passion of Newcastle United’s fanbase.
“Whether or not this deal goes ahead, we’re calling on Newcastle United staff and fans to familiarise themselves with the dire human rights situation in Saudi Arabia and be prepared to speak out about it.
“At the very least, the Premier League should make a clear statement over how its owners and directors test has been applied in this case, and what assessment has been made of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record under Mohammed bin Salman’s leadership.”