Ben Jacobs has dropped a fresh claim on piracy issues and their effect on the potential takeover of Newcastle United and the pending arbitration case.
The Lowdown: Piracy of Premier League games
It was reported by The Guardian back in June of last year that the World Trade Organization (WTO) had ruled that the pirate service beoutQ was being run in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), which was responsible for the broadcasting of illegally streamed football games, including ones from the Premier League.
Are the Premier League to blame for the Newcastle takeover collapse?
The top flight eventually decided to reject the deal between Mike Ashley and the KSA group, with the piracy issue thought to be a reason in them doing so.
An arbitration case between the division and the St. James’ Park faithful has since been set up over the failed bid, and the issue of piracy will surely be heavily discussed.
The Latest: Jacobs on piracy and potential affect on takeover
Jacobs, a sports journalist and digital expert, who has been following the whole takeover saga very closely, has since given his thoughts on the piracy issue and how much it could affect the final results of the arbitration hearing and in turn what it could mean for a potential revival of the takeover.
Jacobs claims that ‘piracy is relevant’ in terms of the bigger picture of the takeover, adding that the North East club are ‘arguing separation to stop it being considered’.
The journalist also claims that the PL ‘would be in a strong position to reject the consortium’ if the Saudi state have to be tested for separation as per the Owners’ and Directors’ Test (ODT), which he says that the Tyneside club are arguing for in order to stop piracy being considered.
Jacobs adds that the league ‘don’t want to sell to those who stole their rights’, thus it is ‘imperative’ that the Magpies win their arbitration case because of the piracy issue.
The Verdict: Piracy issue appears crucial
Piracy is certainly an important issue to consider in terms of whether the potential takeover can be resurrected or not.
As Jacobs outlines, the Premier League will not want one of their own teams in the Toon being taken over by the consortium if the KSA are still illegally streaming matches from the top flight.
It is vital that NUFC can argue that the KSA’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) are a separate entity from the Saudi state, which would in turn eliminate the possibility of piracy being considered.
The pending arbitration hearing will no doubt give a clearer picture over the direction of where the potential takeover is going, but the piracy issue is likely to be a factor that could even decide the entire ordeal, and thus one that Newcastle fans will need to pay close attention to in the coming months.
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