Newcastle United’s strong run of form at the end of the Premier League season has ‘doubled’ their merit payment from the Premier League, according to lawyer Paul Stothard.
Newcastle were 17th in the Premier League after a dismal 3-0 defeat against Brighton & Hove Albion prior to the March international break.
However, they moved clear of the relegation zone with a run of eight points from four matches, picking up commendable draws with Tottenham and Liverpool either side of back-to-back victories against Burnley and Newcastle.
Steve Bruce’s side suffered home losses against Arsenal and Manchester City in their last five games but also picked up another three wins. They impressively won at Leicester before downing Sheffield United in front of fans at St James’ Park and beating Fulham 2-0 on the final day.
That was enough for a 12th-placed finish and, between matchdays 31 and 38, the Magpies were fifth in the form table.
Finishing 17th would have netted Newcastle a merit payment of just £8.5m from the Premier League, but they are now set for a windfall of twice that amount. Stothard tweeted: “Moving from 17th to 12th with victories over Sheffield United and Fulham doubled Newcastle’ merit payment from the PL (from £8.5 to 17m).”
Shields Gazette journalist Liam Kennedy suggested that this may represent a ‘summer budget boost’ for the Magpies, adding that ‘the more in the pot the better’ given the effects of the global pandemic on the club’s balance sheets.
Newcastle owner Mike Ashley will surely be reluctant to invest significant sums of his own money this summer given his reported desperation to sell the club, so this boosted influx from the Premier League could actually be quite important.
Bruce deserved to be criticised for leading Newcastle into the mire in the first place, but he also deserves credit for their fine finish to the campaign. The added £8.5m from those concluding victories over the last week may just finance one astute signing this summer which they may not have been able to afford had they lost both games.
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