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Newcastle United are now the richest sports club in the world

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A Saudi Arabian led consortium has completed a £300 million takeover of Newcastle United, 18 months after it was proposed to the Premier League

Saudi Arabia now owns an 80% stake in Newcastle United. David and Simon Reuben, British property developers, and PCP Capital Partners, based in Dubai, each own 10%.

“All parties have agreed the settlement is necessary to end the long uncertainty for fans over the club’s ownership,” a Premier League statement said.

“The Premier League has now received legally binding assurances that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not control Newcastle United Football Club.”

Yasir al-Rumayyan, Governor of the 500 billion USD Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund (PIF), will be a director, and The Guardian has reported Commerce Minister Majid bin Abdullah al-Qasabi played a key role in securing the takeover.

Amanda Stavely, a British businesswoman and partner in PCP Capital Partners, will also be on the board of directors.

Sacha Deshmukh, Amnesty International UK’s CEO, released a statement saying the takeover must prompt changes to the ownership rules in English football to stop ‘sportswashing’ by foreign governments.

“The closed-door trial of Jamal Khashoggi’s alleged killers was widely perceived to be a part of a wider whitewash by the authorities, and Saudi Arabia is accused of a catalogue of crimes under international humanitarian law during the long-running conflict in Yemen,” Deshmukh said.

“Instead of allowing those implicated in serious human rights violations to walk into English football simply because they have deep pockets, we’ve urged the Premier League to change their owners’ and directors’ test to address human rights issues.”

Hatice Cengiz, the widow of Slain Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi, has called the takeover “horrifying”.

Khashoggi was a fierce critic of the Saudi government and Crown Price Mohammed Bin Salman before his 2018 murder in the Saudi Arabian embassy in Turkey.

Mike Ashley bought Newcastle United for £137 million in 2007 from Freddy Shepherd and Sir John Hall.

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Aussie golfer celebrates championship with ‘how many beers fit’ in Claret Jug

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Australia’s Cameron Smith has produced an incredible back-nine birdie blitz to win the 150th Open Championship at St Andrews, taking home his first major victory

Smith is the first Australian golfer to win the British Open since Greg Norman claimed the title back in 1993.

Starting his final round four shots back from leaders Rory McIlroy and Viktor Hovland, Smith shot a final-round 8-under 64 to surge to the top of the leaderboard and lift the Claret Jug.

https://twitter.com/TheOpen/status/1548725469670957058

“What a week. I’m going to fall apart here I know,” Smith said after the win.

“All the hard work we’ve done over the last couple of years has really started to pay off, and this one definitely makes it worth it.

“I had a lot of support out there, especially the Aussie guys. You kept me going out there. This one’s for Oz.”

How many beers fit in a Claret jug?

In tears, Smith told the crowd he was going to fall apart here after lifting the trophy, but in true Aussie fashion, the golfer wants to find out how many beers will fit in the prized jug.

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Canadian Open set to have a star-studded field

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Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal will play in the Canadian Open next month

Pro players, Williams and Nadal are set to play in the Canadian Open in August, amid speculation about their future in tennis.

40-year-old Serena ended a 12-month drought, after playing at Wimbledon earlier this month. But the 23 grand slam champ lost in the first round to Harmony Tan.

The tournament will mark Nadal’s return to the field after his time at Wimbledon was cut short before the finals because of an injury. Read more.

The two tennis stars are part of a star-studded field of competitors for the Canadian tournament. They will join 40 of the top 43 ranked tennis players in the world.

Other star players include Naomi Osaka, Coco Gauff, Emma Raducanu, Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Casper Ruud and Carlos Alcaraz.

The event runs in the lead up to the US Open which will be the last grand slam of the year. The Canadian Open will take place in Toronto and Montreal from August the 6th.

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Liverpool fans incorrectly blamed for Champions League chaos

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A “litany of administrative errors” is how French authorities are describing a security breach at this year’s Champions League Final

The French Government initially blamed Liverpool supporters and fake tickets for the chaos in which Champions League fans were tear-gassed at the final in May.

But a new report has found the supporters were blamed unfairly, and a series of “administrative errors” caused the chaos. The senate report found “dysfunctional mistakes were made at every level”.

The final was delayed by more than half an hour after police held back people who were trying to enter the stadium.

The report takes aim at Paris Police, UEFA and the French Government for failing to plan, and for blaming the supporters.

“It is unfair to have sought to blame supporters of the Liverpool team for the disturbances, as the interior minister has done, to deflect attention from the state’s inability to properly manage the crowd and suppress the action of several hundred violent and organised delinquents.”

Many fans made formal complaints about being pushed, and assaulted at the time.

Opposition lawmakers believe the scandal has damaged France’s overseas reputation.

Real Madrid ended up winning the match in a 1-nil victory.

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