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Seven interested in Magpies

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Seven potential buyers could be ready for a battle to get their hands on Newcastle.

Investment bankers Seymour Pierce, who have been appointed by owner Mike Ashley to sell the club, have issued a prospectus of sale to the seven interested parties.

The document details the club's current financial position 16 months after Ashley completed his own £134.4million takeover.

Each of the prospective new owners has signed a confidentiality agreement that prevents the release of information contained in the prospectus.

The move is a significant development in the sale process, which was initiated by the billionaire following mass protests in the wake of manager Kevin Keegan's resignation last month.

Speculation has been rife ever since Ashley signalled his intention to offload the club he bought in May last year over the identities of those who might want to take it off his hands.

A Nigerian consortium, fronted by London-based spokesman Chris Nathaniel, have made no secret of their interest.

Indeed, they are understood to be ready to table - some reports have suggested they have already done so - a bid for around £200million.

However, it has emerged in the last few days a South African consortium could be ready to make an offer somewhere nearer the £300million Ashley is understood to be asking.

Both the Nigerians and their South African counterparts have hinted they would restore Keegan to the manager's job, with Newcastle's evening newspaper, the Evening Chronicle, suggesting the latter would offer him a multi-million stake in the business.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2008, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Newcastle United
Kevin Keegan

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