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‘I’m carrying on at Newcastle until I hear otherwise’ – Steve Bruce defiant as rival managers voice Saudi takeover concerns – live updates

Jürgen Klopp, the Liverpool manager, has compared Newcastle United’s Saudi Arabia takeover to last season’s attempt to create a European Super League and said he is surprised by the lack of Premier League response.

Referencing the opposition to the aborted breakaway by European clubs in April, Klopp said the creation of a ‘super-team’ owned by a country with the resources to guarantee success is ‘pretty much the same’. 

Liverpool were among the six English clubs who wanted to join the Super League, preserving their annual income. Klopp spoke against his own club’s plans.

This time he took specific aim at Premier League chief executive Richard Masters for his failure to issue a statement explaining how and why a nation with Saudi Arabia’s human rights record was permitted to push ahead with the £305 million deal, despite previous opposition.

“I was actually waiting for some official statements about it, like from Richard Masters or somebody else because we all know there are obviously some concerns about human rights issues,” said Klopp.

“I think that is all clear. We all think the same here. It did not happen in the first place and that is still the situation.”

“What will it mean for football? A few months ago we had a massive issue – the whole football world – with 12 clubs trying to build a super-league. Rightly so. It didn’t happen. This is trying to create a super-team, if you want. It is pretty much the same. Guaranteed spots in the Champions League, in a few years time.”

He also took a dig at football’s authorities for failing to clarify if financial fair play rules are still active, and whether Newcastle will have to abide by them.

“With how Financial Fair Play is used nowadays, nobody knows if it still exists or not,” said Klopp.

“Everyone knows it. Newcastle fans will love it. There is a new superpower in Newcastle. Money cannot buy everything but over time they have enough money to make wrong decisions and then right decisions, then they will be where they want to be. The Premier League obviously thought, ‘let’s give it a go’. It’s the third club now owned by a country and it is what everyone has to deal with.”

Klopp says Newcastle have joined Manchester City and Paris St-Germain as clubs ‘owned by a country’, although he suggested it will take time for Newcastle to rebuild to such a level.

“More important than money is good decisions. I’m not concerned about that, I just describe the situation,” he said.

Football is a wonderful game, you can still win games even when the financial power of your opponent is much bigger than your own. 

It will not happen overnight. Newcastle is not safe yet in the league, and that would slow down the process for sure! But we know that there are people out there whose football knowledge is big enough. There will be some changes to the structure, things like this. It’s a massive project.”



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