The deal was still being scrutinised under the Premier League’s owners’ and directors’ test and it is understood PIF ran out of patience.
A statement from the Saudi consortium read:
With a deep appreciation for the Newcastle community and the significance of its football club, we have come to the decision to withdraw our interest in acquiring Newcastle United Football Club.
As an autonomous and purely commercial investor, our focus was on building long-term value for the club, its fans and the community as we remained committed to collaboration, practicality and proactivity through a difficult period of global uncertainty and significant challenges for the fans and the club,” the investor group said in a statement.
Ultimately, during the unforeseeably prolonged process, the commercial agreement between the Investment Group and the club’s owners expired and our investment thesis could not be sustained.”
The consortium’s withdrawal could pave the way for a takeover by American entrepreneur Henry Mauriss, who has registered his interest in Newcastle and remains extremely keen for the acquisition to happen.