Liverpool head coach Jurgen Klopp has named Newcastle United as the new “superpower” in football following the club’s £305m takeovers. The Premier League approved the Saudi-led takeover last week after receiving “legally binding assurances” the Saudi Arabian state would not be in control.
Jurgen Klopp Names Newcastle United Football Superpower
Jurgen Klopp said: “Newcastle are guaranteed to play a dominant role in world football for the next 20 or 30 years.” The German also said: “There are no two opinions about the obvious human rights concerns in Saudi Arabia. That’s not a question. But how it could then happen that this was nevertheless allowed despite many concerns, I cannot assess.
“If we only talk about football, then in the long term, of course, we have to say that they are going to be a superpower.” Amnesty International UK chief executive Sacha Deshmukh had previously hinted that the takeover raised a whole lot of “deeply troubling questions about sports washing, about human rights and sport, and about the integrity of English football”.
The takeover was 80% financed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), whose chair is Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. According to investigations by Western intelligence agencies, the human rights case is that it was alleged that Salman ordered the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.
Jurgen Klopp is not the only manager saying this, as Chelsea, Manchester City, and Manchester United head coaches are all saying the same thing. Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel said: “I think it is normal that people have concerns, but we trust in the Premier League. They have accepted it, and they are the authorities in this case. “It seems we have a new competitor for titles and places. This is what we are up for.”
Also, Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: “I didn’t think it was going to go through, but now it has, and it is going to change the picture. “I don’t know the plans of the new owners. I can’t say if they’re going to spend loads of money, it’s a fantastic football club with traditions.
“Long term, it’s going to be interesting to watch, and it has been the talk of football the last few weeks, and that’s what they want in the end. I don’t want to join in that political discussion.” While Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola said: “Looks like the Newcastle fans I saw were happy. It’s business, people took over a club, and the people of Newcastle are happy. I’m far away from why the decision was made.”