By Andrew White and Emily Noorollahi
Businessman confirms talks with club owner Mike Ashley, eyes Iran legend for coaching role.
Iranian businessman Sirous Mahjoob on Thursday confirmed that he is in the final stages of negotiations to buy English football club Newcastle United.
In an interview with Iranian news agency ILNA, the UAE-based tycoon said that he hoped the deal would help to strengthen Iranian football.
“My purpose in buying Newcastle is to help Iranian football,” he said.
“Without any question my love and passion for my country has made me want to create a bridge and a good relationship between Iranian football and British football. With this I could be part of making Iranian football grow.”
Mahjoob also said that one of his goals was to use Iranian players and coaches at Newcastle, and revealed that he has approached the ‘David Beckham of Iranian football', Ali Daei, with regards a coaching role at the club.
“Ali Daei is a definite priority for coaching the Newcastle team for the first season,” he said. “Daei is one of my close friends and we have had short conversations together, although we haven’t had serious talks with regards to this. After we purchase the club we will talk with Daei in regards to his presence.”
Daei is a former Iranian football player and coach. He is a former captain of the Iran national football team, is the world's all-time leading goalscorer in international matches, and briefly coached the national team in its failed attempt to qualify for the 2010 World Cup.
A spokesman for Mahjoob said on Wednesday that he wanted to bring Kevin Keegan back to St James' Park for a third spell as manager.
On the same day, Newcastle managing director Derek Llambias said that the troubled club – relegated from the English Premier League last season - could be in the hands of new owners “next week”.
Forcing players and coaches on the management (Kevin Keegan especially) ? It'll never work.
Bring as many players as you can with Mahjoob, welcome to Newcastle! Forget about Shearer and Keegan, Daei will know what to do with the football club!
Will believe this when I see it. Mr Mahjoob should get on with his bid instead of briefing journos.
i hope this is true that Mr mahjood is close to a deal so that we can finally say good by to the chucle brothers(ashley/lambias) regarding Keegan i think this may be a bad move as we been there and still got the t shurt from the first time, i would love it love it keegan did come back as they say 3rd time lucky!!!! but as long as ashleys gone and mr mahjood is genuine and wants to see the toon back where they belong bring it on hes got my vote dean
bring Keegan back if he can do it his way only. He will be off agian at the first sign of medling and doubt he will even be interested judging on whats said here. Dai what experience of english football does he have, if this guy does intend to buy the club and bring him in then he will need to be strong willed and stick buy his decsion. If he beleives in the long term his man will get it right becasue I guarantee if he starts badly especially as an unknown over here the pressure will be straight on and calls for his head will start. The last thing Newcastle need is another season with a coach sacked mid way through.
I'm afraid this is a wind-up me bonny lads. See the letters S M B at front, middle and back of his name.
This is a hoax, when will you realise that ??? This guy doesnt even exist. Wise up folks !!!!!
Of course its not a wind up, you people give mackems far too much credit if you think they could engineer this..